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Working for a living is something we all expect to do, but, technically, we also have to work for when we don’t earn a living anymore; also known as saving a pension for our retirement.
Yet when you’re just about managing, paying your inflated rent or mortgage, barely getting any interest on your savings, and grappling with the constantly-rising costs of living, how, exactly, are you supposed to put aside this mythical retirement money at all?
The harsh reality, unfortunately, is that many of us don’t. Peer-to-peer lending platform Lending Works surveyed 1,500 non-retired adults in the UK (YouGov), and made some worrying discoveries.
Firstly, over 1 in 5 of those who aren’t yet retired – 22 per cent – gloomily believe that they’ll never be financially secure enough to retire.
This suggests they have visions of working until they drop, as they won’t be able to afford to stop earning money.
This pessimistic view is highest in the 35-44 year old category, with 25 per cent of them not seeing themselves as ever being financially secure enough to retire, although only 17 per cent of 18-24 year olds, who technically have more time to start saving, agree.
Countrywide, the outlook is bleakest in the West Midlands (27 per cent), perhaps due to relatively high unemployment, compared to only 19 per cent in London, where there are, theoretically, more jobs.
Over a third of non-retired adults – 34 per cent – don’t save a single penny towards retirement each month. Women are guiltier of this than men, with 41 per cent of non-retired females not saving towards retirement, compared to 26 per cent of men.
So who does manage to put a few pennies away for a rainy day? Interestingly, the survey finds a correlation between retirement saving and choice of social media.
Over half of people who use LinkedIn contribute 3 per cent of their salary or more to their pension pot each month. This drops to 32 per cent for those who use Facebook and Twitter – who, perhaps, tend to be younger and not as well established yet in their careers – and 29% for those who use Google+.
Nick Harding, CEO and founder of Lending Works says it is clear from this research that many Brits are quite pessimistic when it comes to the future.
‘It is also particularly concerning to see how many people aren’t planning adequately for their retirement, although it is perhaps somewhat understandable given the slow economic recovery and poor returns on savings currently available.
‘But with a growing number of alternatives to the established avenues for saving, there are still many ways in which consumers can get on top of things, and thus leave themselves in good shape by the time they reach traditional retirement age.’