Whether you have started contributing to a pension or you have been paying into one for years – at some point you’ll want to know the value of your savings.
With the end of 2018 approaching many of us will be looking ahead to 2019, and with a new year comes new financial goals and challenges.
In order to make certain financial decisions, especially if you’re close to retirement age, knowing how much your pensions are worth is vital.
Check your statement
The first port of call for finding out how much your pensions are worth is to check your pension statements. These will be sent by your provider and will give you a clear indication as to how much your fund is valued at, if applicable, as well as what you could be entitled to in retirement.
It will also tell you what type of pension you have as there are differences. A final salary or defined benefit pension as it is also known, is based on the years of service and salary with your employer and in some cases can come with additional benefits.
The other type of pension is a defined contribution which is where you and, maybe your employer make contributions into the scheme.
The overall value and how much you could receive in retirement will depend on how much you have paid in, how well your investment has performed over time and how you decide to access your benefits.
During your working life you may have changed jobs on more than one occasion, and with each new position comes a new pension scheme. Sometimes these pensions can get forgotten and become harder to track down, so it is important to keep an eye on them.
Contacting your old employers’ is a good place to start if you need information about a particular pension scheme that you paid into during the time you worked for them. You can also get in touch with any pension providers to see if you were a member of that scheme.
If you are stuck, there are specialist pension advisers who can help you to track down all your old pensions, and there is nothing wrong with getting professional advice.
Having too many different pensions can be problematic so it may be advisable to consolidate your pensions into one fund. This should make it easier to manage with just one pension statement.
It is important that you understand all of the consequences of moving your pensions as you may lose out on some of the benefits that may be associated with them – so be sure to seek proper pension advice before making any decision to move.
If you need pension advice, or have a question about your pensions, then contact the friendly Pensionlite team who will be ready to help.