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Lifestyle changes

Ever wondered how getting married or going travelling could affect your pension? We’re here to explain how changes to your lifestyle could impact your retirement savings.

Marital status

Getting married

When you get married you become legally responsible for your partner, so you both plan for the future.. As well as your own earnings and finances, you’ll be more aware of your other half’s situation too. If your or your partner’s retirement savings aren’t on track, then you could increase your pension contributions to make up the shortfall.

A wedding and honeymoon could put you under financial pressure, but it’s worth remembering that your pension could support you and your partner in later life. To help you take control of your spending, check out the Money Advice Service’s Budget Planner.

Getting divorced

If you get divorced, then you could be required to share your pension with your ex-spouse as part of a settlement. A divorce can have a big impact on your finances and how much you can save. You might consider stopping your contributions but you should understand what this means for your pension first.

Family life

Having children

If you plan on having a child, it’s a good idea to ask your employer what happens to your workplace pension contributions during maternity or paternity leave as it can change from company to company. Depending on what your employer says, you may want to consider contributing more into your pension fund to offset any reduced employer contributions.

Having children can bring an increase in responsibilities and financial outgoings. These finance changes might prompt you to pause or stop your workplace pension contributions. Just remember that any time you take a break from paying into your pension fund you may also miss out on contributions from your employer and tax relief. If you decide to stop your monthly contributions entirely, you might want to think about making a lump sum payment at a later date as a way of catching up for the time spent not saving.

Children leaving home

If your children leave home, it’s possible you’ll have more disposable income on your hands. You might choose to use this to make lifestyle changes or increase your retirement contributions -  just remember to balance supporting your children and taking care of yourself in later life.

Looking after others

It’s a hard thing to plan for, but at some point in your life you might need to care for others. This could be for multiple reasons, such as accommodating ill health, old age or disabilities. Looking after others can potentially put a strain on your finances, available working hours and ability to save. You therefore might be inclined to pause contributions into your pension. Just remember that any time you take a break from paying into your pension fund, you may also miss out on contributions from your employer and tax relief.

Travelling or emigrating

If you go travelling, for example on a sabbatical, you always have the option of pausing contributions while you are away. You can do this easily through your online account. Just remember that any time you take a break from paying into your pension fund you may also miss out on contributions from your employer and tax relief.

If you become no longer classed as working or living in the UK, payments into your pension will stop. However, the money already in your pension fund will remain invested until you decide what you would like to do with it. Bear in mind, wherever you live, the rules of when you can take your money out of a UK pension don’t change.

Depending on where you live abroad, there may be elements to consider when it comes to the tax you pay on any payments that are made into your pension.

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Log in to your online account

Check the balance of your pot, make extra contributions and change how your money’s invested by logging in to your online account.