4 in 5 savers underestimate retirement income requirement

Four out of every five savers underestimate how much money they will need to save for retirement, research from Scottish Widows has found.

In the study, over a third (34 per cent) of advisers said they believed that helping their clients plan for their retirement was becoming increasingly complex.

Furthermore, more than half (56 per cent) often see their clients underestimating how long they will live for.

When quizzed on their life expectancy, Scottish Widows advisers found that 46 per cent of their clients listened to the advice and reconsidered their financial planning, while 22 per cent believed they knew better than their adviser and 23 per cent thought they’d die earlier than the national average.

Commenting on the findings, Scottish Widows director of annuities, Emma Watkins, said: “Life expectancy has grown substantially in the last 60 years and now one in 10 people will live to be 100.

“We know this is creating new challenges for advisers, as they are having to help clients who could be vastly misjudging the costs of a longer retirement.

“We believe it’s important for people approaching retirement to have access to a range of options on how to access their retirement savings, and that’s why we’ve remained committed to the annuities market while others have withdrawn over the last few years.”

However, more than a quarter (27 per cent) of its advisers said that their clients don’t consider annuities when seeking for a secure income in retirement.

Scottish Widows also found that savers were concerned that their pension savings would run out in retirement, with 77 per cent of clients citing concerns.

Their main concern is that they didn’t save enough during the working life, with 43 per cent citing it as a concern, while 18 per cent said that living costs were higher than they anticipated.

Over one in 10 (11 per cent) felt their savings provided a lower income than expected.

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