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Great Things To Know Before You Retire Hunt

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Over 50s Money Saving
108 replies 53.6K views
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Replies

  • margaretclaremargaretclare Forumite
    10.8K posts
    I agree with all of the above, although planning in my 50s was not possible - but at least my late husband and I moved to a bungalow in south Essex from a 3-storey weaver's cottage in the Pennines! Retirement planning wasn't really possible for me because I was made redundant aged 56 coincidental with his death. Planning to retire in your 50s sounds a good idea because from what I've read, seen and heard around me, an awful lotta people get made redundant in their 50s, and if you've planned to retire anyway, you won't be in the situation of a bloke I read about in our local paper yesterday. His sister is bemoaning the fact that he worked hard, never smoked or drank or went on expensive foreign holidays just so that he could retire to the seaside, was made redundant at 57 and can't claim anything because he has to use up his savings first.

    Re the bungalow you describe above - ours was 1930s jerry-built by a speculative builder, single-skin walls as you say, and just about everything has been replaced except the actual walls. I get an annuity payment of £1483.94 every September from 1989 and from the beginning, I've always used it for something definite that I could see rather than frittering it away on living expenses. This year some of it is going towards our Christmas getaway and the rest saved for a replacement boiler which will be more energy-efficient. So we are still doing things on a planned and gradual basis even though we're 71, but we've almost come to the end now. The drive needs re-laying next year and after that, it's just maintenance. It's also nice to be able to pay for things to be done - I paid some 'tree fellas' on Monday to trim all the trees and bushes, £120, money well spent.

    I've long thought that it's better to 'think ahead' for the time when you won't be quite so agile and active. I replied to a thread yesterday about someone who has £50K in capital but wants to give it all away to avoid having to spend any of it on 'care'. This is a common theme. They were talking about putting in a walk-in shower and a stair-lift and would they get any help from anywhere. It would have been better to move to somewhere without stairs and to do the walk-in shower BEFORE this stage was reached!

    I agree about the computer too.

    Margaret
    [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]Æ[/FONT]r ic wisdom funde, [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]æ[/FONT]r wear[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]ð[/FONT] ic eald.
    Before I found wisdom, I became old.
  • My mum retired due to ill health recently at age 59. She still had over 16k on the mortgage, plus maxed out credit cards and two personal loans. I was able to remortgage and put 27k towards her debts, so she could pay off her mortgage and most expensive debts. I have a big house, so the idea was she could live with me, spend more time near her grandaughter, and rent out her old home. Our sums indicated she could pay off her debts in 7 years with a decent tenant.

    Beautiful eh? Except it didn't work! The letting agent was pathetic, and we got very few nibbles about renting the place. The council starting charging full council tax on the empty property after 6 months, and mum started missing the peace and quiet associated with giving grandchildren back at the end of the day! Shes moving back to her home, with vague ideas of working part-time, or paying off my re-mortgage with an inheritance in the dim and distant future.

    Major lesson for me is you never know when the gods of fate will force you to retire through ill health or redundency. Becoming debt free as soon as possible in your life is not a guarantee of retirement bliss, but it's a fine contribution to avoiding retirement misery. Never mind setting a debt free age of 55! How about 45?
  • Major lesson for me is you never know when the gods of fate will force you to retire through ill health or redundency. Becoming debt free as soon as possible in your life is not a guarantee of retirement bliss, but it's a fine contribution to avoiding retirement misery. Never mind setting a debt free age of 55! How about 45?

    I completely agree. I didn't know that I would be made redundant and widowed at the same time in 1992! I've been lucky, met a lovely man in 1997, we've worked together and between us we do all right. I would agree - be debt-free as soon as you possibly can! Only, I have been in trouble on a different thread on Martin's site, the argument whether to save or not to save comes up time and time again. People don't want to 'give money to the taxman' they say, but the same argument doesn't seem to apply when it's a matter of paying unnecessary amounts of money off debts, interest, bank charges, court fees, you name it.

    I read a letter in our local paper only yesterday - a woman was writing about her brother who's been made redundant aged 57. The argument goes: he never smoked, drank or went on expensive foreign holidays, saved for his retirement - now he can't claim anything until his savings are used up! The letter said that 'if he'd spent all his money on smoking, drinking and holidays he'd be better off now because he'd get help'. This type of argument, with variations, appears over and over again. 'My neighbour has no savings, gets pension credit and is better off than me'. You can argue this one till the cows come home.

    Margaret
    [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]Æ[/FONT]r ic wisdom funde, [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]æ[/FONT]r wear[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]ð[/FONT] ic eald.
    Before I found wisdom, I became old.
  • LeonieLeonie Forumite
    101 posts
    I took my small company pension and lump sum at 50 when I was made redundant nearly 5 years ago - it and the redundancy payment paid off my mortgage and debts and let me downshift to a less demanding position until retirement. I've stayed debt free since then, but it's a bit of a struggle.

    I've had government pension statements, all of which say I have enough 'credits' for a full pension +some Serps and a tiny amount with Equitable (what a fool I was!). However some of the government pension is dependent on my ex-husbands contributions, from when I was child raising - we've been divorced for 20 years. Does anyone know what would happen if I re-married - to a younger man? Would I lose part of my pension?

    It's not going to be generous anyway, probably with all things thrown in - about what I get now, working part time so that I can spend time looking after my grandsons - which doesn't allow for extras like holidays, or new cars. and I have no savings - only the house.

    I've never really had spare cash anyway, so it's no big deal if I'm still as skint as ever, but I do like to plan ahead. Any advice welcome!
    "Be kind. For everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." Plato

    "After all is said and done, more is said than done." Aesop
  • Gary said
    home_alone wrote:
    I took early retirement at 60 and my main worry (if you can call it that) is IHT, I do not want to become Gordon Browns best friend, it has been only since retirement that I have discovered that if I do not act know with hopefully at least 20 years to go, I will leave about 400K to the Chancellor, this is not bragging but with rising house prices and a fairly thrifty life this is what I or we are facing. I find with loopholes closing I am left with very little option but to give my 2 children their inheritance up front and also to downsize my home which I am reluctant to do so.
    gary

    A famous Law Lord once said that Inheritance Tax was an avoidable tax only paid by those who hate the taxman less than they dislike their own family. There are various quite legitimate ways of significantly reducing the impact of inheritance tax on your heirs - many people of medium wealth like yourself manage to avoid it entirely.

    So talk to an experienced probate lawyer or personal tax accountant - it may cost you a few hundred £££, but it should reduce the final bill by much more. If you were to die before revising your will, your heirs might have to pay 40% of £400k - £285k = £46,000 !!

    Amongst other things, gifts to charity are free of Inheritance Tax.

    Ian
  • home_alonehome_alone Forumite
    755 posts
    Ian, my IHT would be about £400, I have had advice but its complex and I do hate IHT the thought of leaving anything to the goverment makes me cringe. The 2 major points are 1. How long will I/we live and 2 How much cash will I/we need, both my wife and I are 63 so with liuck 20 years (or at least one of us) if I downsize our requirement in the future will be alot less, my aim therefore is to get as close as I can to the IHT threshold of the day. I know life is not an exact science, here today gone tomorrow but I will have a go. The only other flaw is if they abolish IHT after I have given my cash away, but thats a pipe dream.

    gary
  • korukoru Forumite
    1.4K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭
    To get a full pension, you need to have paid National Insurance for 44 years (currently a little less for women). If you have lived overseas for several years, you will not have clocked up the 44 years, but if you were in countries with special agreements with the UK (eg, Commonwealth and EU) you may be able to get credit for years you spent in those countries.

    The catch is that you need to be able to prove you lived in the relevant country and for how long, so you need to make sure you retain the relevant evidence until you retire. You can't provide the proof in advance - you have to do it when you retire.

    In my case, I was overseas 10 years ago and there's more than 20 years to go to retirement, so I have dug out the proof now and put it with my pension documents, so that I know I can find it in 20 years time.
    koru
  • tara wrote:
    You may have a secure envelope or box at your Bank. Therein you may keep for example your Will and House Deeds. My Bank charged £35 per annum. I found out by accident that once I reached 65 I did not have to pay this fee. I had reached age 67 and "lost" £ 70. Maybe your Bank will have different rules regarding the qualifying conditions. The saving whilst small perhaps will pay for something else!

    threadbanner.gif

    Two points on this -

    1) Your solicitor will most probably not charge you for storing either your will ormyour deeds
    2) anyway, deeds have "dematerialised" and no longer have any value except i the cicumstances that your title is not registered at the Land Registry. All that matters is the current state of the Land Registry computer.

    Hope this helps
  • Is it the case that ALL banks do not charge seior for safekeeping of deeds etc? my parents are octogenarians and are stil lpaying an annual fee to HSBC...
    Anyone else know anything about this?
  • agaqueen wrote:
    Two points on this -

    1) Your solicitor will most probably not charge you for storing either your will ormyour deeds
    2) anyway, deeds have "dematerialised" and no longer have any value except i the cicumstances that your title is not registered at the Land Registry. All that matters is the current state of the Land Registry computer.

    Hope this helps

    Except that the deeds taht i have seen often have much detailed information with them about drainage routes and service points which the land registry does nto have. It was useful to locate a drain which had been covered over under the lawn and the council denied existed (because it was not on their plans).
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