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Growing my pension

Nest invests your money so you could have more to spend when you retire. But you might need to make small changes to get your retirement plan on track.

Whether you’ve got one pound in your account or ten thousand, we’re just as focused on helping it grow. Whether you know a lot about pensions or a little, we make sure you can take control. If you want to choose how you invest by selecting funds, you can. It’s your money. You call the shots.

It all starts with understanding the amount of income you need in retirement. Once you know that, making small changes now could mean a big difference to your future. 

You can change the amount you contribute

The more you pay into your pension pot, the more income you’ll have when you retire – especially if you get extra money through employer contributions and tax relief. So, why not save a bit extra every month, and make it work harder by investing it in your pot?

For some people, paying off a mortgage takes priority over growing their pension savings, but it’s worth considering a plan that allows you to balance both. It’s also worth thinking about putting more into your pension rather than assuming other savings or investments, like ISAs, are the best place for your money. Always check the rates you get so you can allocate your money cleverly and build up more for your future. 

The same goes for any other pension pots you might have. It’s always worth checking how your money’s performing and the fees you’re being charged.

When increasing your contributions could make sense

If you change jobs, it’s a smart idea to try and arrange the highest possible pension contribution that you can at the start. This is because it will be harder to do so if you leave it until later.

If you receive a lump sum, like a bonus or an inheritance payment, it could be a good time to boost your pension pot with an additional contribution.

If you’ve been automatically enrolled into a workplace pension, your contributions are based on a percentage of your pay. So, if you get a pay rise, your contributions will automatically increase. As you'll be taking home more money, you could consider making additional contributions to boost your pot even more.

Now you’ve seen some examples of how to grow your pension pot, don’t forget that even small changes can make a big difference to your future. 

Let’s say you started saving just a small amount, like £7 a week. That works out at £1 a day – doesn’t sound much, right? Well, if you did this for 10 years, you’d have pocketed a huge £3,640. 

If you put this money into your pension pot, you could save even more. That’s because you could get tax relief every time you pay in and any interest on your savings is reinvested and keeps earning you more returns. So, even using your spare change to increase your contribution can still have a big impact. For example, if you pay in an extra £2.50 a week from the age of 22 to 68 you can grow your pot by a staggering £13,600.

You can change how long you save for

The longer you save into your pot the better, as your money will have longer to grow.

If possible, you should avoid withdrawing too much when you reach 55 just because you legally can. After this age it’s likely you’ll live and work for a while longer, meaning more time to increase your pot through tax relief and employer contributions. And if you’re planning on keeping your money invested for longer, don’t forget to change your Nest retirement age.

You can change the way your money is invested

When you join Nest your money is invested into a default fund, as it would be with other providers. Our default fund is designed to work for the majority of our members. However, you can choose an alternative fund to match your religious beliefs, ethical choices or the level of investment risk you’re willing to take.

In our default fund, the further away you are from retirement the more your money is placed in investments that focus on providing high levels of growth. You may want to consider changing the date you plan to retire on, so your pot has more chance of growing.

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It’s never too late

You’re not alone if you feel that you haven’t done enough to secure the future you want. The good news is that it’s never too late to change your situation.

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