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The value of pensions and the income they produce can fall as well as rise. You may get back less than you invested.
Tax treatment varies according to individual circumstances and is subject to change.
Types of pensions
State Pension-This is something most people can claim when they reach State Pension Age. To find out your State Pension age use the calculator on the GOV.UK website. The amount of State Pension you get depends on your National Insurance record and how many qualifying years of NI contributions you have.
Those of you who don’t have enough qualifying years to be able to get a full state pension may be able to make up the gaps in your National Insurance contributions by paying voluntary contributions. However you should be aware there are time limits for paying these, more information on this can be found on the GOV.UK website.
Personal Pension-Anyone can have a personal pension, it is quite simply a way of saving for your retirement. You would make regular payments into your pension fund which is invested with the aim of increasing the amount in it before retirement. Whilst many people have both personal and workplace pensions those who may want to consider a personal pension are:
Stakeholder Pension-This type of pension works very much like a personal pension with the following exceptions:
If you want a lot of flexibility in how much you pay and when you pay into your pension a stakeholder pension might be a good option for you.
SIIPS (self invested personal pensions)
Unlike personal, workplace and stakeholder pensions where your investments are managed for you, SIPPs give you the freedom to choose and manage your own investments. Because of the risks involved in self management SIPPs usually have higher charges than other pensions.
SIPP providers include fund managers, pension consultants and insurance companies.
Tax relief on pensions
Subject to an annual allowance, if you are under 75 you will get back the tax you have paid on all contributions. Usually this will go straight into your pension pot.
You get 20% tax back from the Government unless you are a higher rate taxpayer. Those who pay a higher rate of tax can claim an extra 20%, top-rate taxpayers an extra 25%. Those who are in a workplace pension may not need to reclaim any tax as your employer may simply deduct less tax from your wages.
Please note, if you don’t make a reclaim the tax won’t be paid. We would advise people to check if you are in a higher tax bracket. More information can be found here.
How much should you put into a pension fund?
The earlier you start the longer you will have to build up your pot. The sums are therefore quite easy, the later you start the more you will need to contribute each month. A guide to how much really depends on what you as an individual require from retirement, but as a guide for a comfortable retirement work on the following: Take your age when starting a pension fund and halve it. This is the % of your monthly salary before deductions that is recommended to be put into a pension pot. So an example would be: Current age 24,halved would be 12, so 12% of monthly salary into your pension. The Money Advice Service has a pension calculator you can try.
It’s really important to keep contributing and not to miss a month. As your pay rises make sure you increase your pension contributions accordingly to ensure you don’t fall behind.
Not every company offers a workplace pension scheme and auto-enrolment is addressing this by making it law for employers to offer their staff a pension scheme. By 2018 all employers will have to contribute to their employees pensions. Auto-enrolment started with just larger companies but in two years all employers must offer this.
It isn’t compulsory for employees to join but as it’s an opt-out scheme you will pay into it automatically unless you choose to opt-out. But why would you want to opt out? With auto-enrolment you have the added bonus of both your employer and the government making contributions to your pension.
You can access this pension when you reach your state pension age but until that time it will be held for you by a pension provider.
How much will I need to pay in to my work pension?
It is a % of your pre-tax earnings, so the more you earn the more you will pay in. Here are the minimum contributions:
Date You Employer Total
Until 30 Sept 2017 1% 1% 2%
April 2018-30 Sept 2018 3% 2% 5%
April 2019 onwards 5% 3% 8%
And don’t forget, you will also get tax relief from the government.
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Vincent Edwards, North West Training Council
Well, Renuka and I moved into our new house last weekend....I just wanted to thank you mate for all of your help in helping secure the mortgage and getting us into our own home at long last. It's been a long time coming but we got there in the end.
We'd be more than happy in the future to recommend your services and company Damain , you made things so easy for us and we're really grateful to yourself , and to Cal for putting us in touch with you...
Damian, you're a legend...THANKS so much for getting us into our own home..!! we just have to pay for it now..!!!
All the very best
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Tim Smith, Heraeus Medical
I have worked with Peter French for many years now and he always provides very detailed analysis for any recommendations he makes. He is very personable and always offers appropriate advice which has led to sound investment decisions based on my circumstances at the time. I would highly recommend him.
James and Nagina Johnstone,
We have have had the pleasure of being clients of Gary Oxborough at Barlow Irvin since 2008. He helped us purchase our first home together as a couple and he has recently helped us purchase our 'forever family home' now that we have 2 children. We are so happy with the service that we have received & continue to receive, Gary makes contact at regular intervals to bring us the best deal that will offer us a more prosperous financial future.
Not only do we have a beautiful new home but our family is financially secure in the event of any eventuality. We thank Barlow Irvin and Gary for all his help and look forward to our next financial assessment. It is a pleasure to work with such a professional who works around the clock to help his clients and always endeavours to give honest and frank advice that is tailored to our needs.
Steve Crudgington, Trans International Forwarders Ltd
In the many years I have been dealing with Alan Woosey I can honestly say it has never been anything else than an absolute pleasure.
The sometimes delicate nature of personal financial situations has always been understood and when it comes to those awkward questions that we all have to deal with from time to time in our lives, Alan has always managed to find a quality solution.
His work ethic and ethos is now more than apparent in the Aspire way of conducting business. I can wholeheartedly recommend Alan and his team to anyone looking quality financial products backed up by an unrivalled personal service.
Paul Ashurst, Thompson Jones Chartered Accountants
Neil Mellor has dealt with both my personal finances and those of my clients for many years. He has always provided an excellent and friendly service, dealing with all matters in a speedy and professional manner. I never hesitate to recommend Neil to anyone.
Tim Bilsborough, Managing Director at Vedo Limited
Peter French has looked after my financial affairs for over 5 years now. His attention to detail and sense of responsibility to mine and my family's financial wellbeing is exemplary.
Over the year's he's been very helpful and accommodating to my needs. Consistently showing he has my best interests at heart.
I would, without hesitation recommend Peter.
E and H Property, Howard and Elaine Hyman, Company Directors
We have been working with Tina Feurer for many years.
Tina keeps in regular contact with us. Over the years we have had many financial situations that have needed sorting out.
She has listened to our needs and future plans and has resolved situations in a way that always meets our future plans and fits within our budget.
Tina is always available and we have no hesitation in recommending her to our family, friends and our business colleagues.
Mr Alan and Mrs Gillian Heywood,
From our positive experience I would recommend Tina Feuer as our adviser. Tina is always courteous, friendly, and efficient, and listens to the needs of her client. She is always well prepared, easy to reach, and ensures the job is well done.
She has for many years now provided us with clear, concise information on any topic being discussed, and has always made sure it both met our needs, and was within budget. Any more complicated queries, she has, and would always endeavour to answer.
We would not have managed to achieve some of the wonderful things we have this last few years (and some still yet to come) without her. We consider her a part of our family, so a very, very, big thank you Tina.
As secondary testament to the service she gives, my two sons and their wives have also chosen to use her as their advisor too as they set off on their own paths, with first time mortgages and associated protection and insurances.
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