Retirement in the United Kingdom is quite different from retirement in the United States. The government of the United States offers Social Security--a program that pays out a percentage of your lifetime earnings until you die. In the UK, a similar system called a State Pension is available as a safety net for seniors who reach retirement. However, as the payout for the State Pension is rather low, it's important for workers in the UK to plan for additional security.
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Review the limitations of the State Pension system. As of November 2009, the maximum payout for a couple is 152.30 pounds per week. That figures to 660 pounds a month--for many, not enough to survive.
Calculate how much you'll need in addition to this figure, taking into account the maximum for men and women (95 pounds a week). It's not an exact science, but figure what expenses you'll have--rent or mortgage, food, travel--for certain and use this as a launching point.
Research annuity, 401(k), CD and other investment strategies. Speak with a trusted adviser--a family lawyer, accountant, or colleague--about the possibility of investing. Ask for references.
Meet with an investment adviser. Come with a plan. Calculate the number of years you have left to work, how much you'd like to have for retirement, and calculate how much, just in principal, you'll need to put into an investment. An adviser will show you how that money can earn returns.
Purchase and invest in low-risk choices at first. Measure their performance and make riskier decisions if you choose. However, it's best, especially if you're nearing retirement, to keep the bulk of your investments in a relatively low-risk portfolio that gains steady, consistent returns.
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