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The importance of pension planning

by Roy McLoughlin

3 November 2022

As part of Pension Awareness Week, our guest author, Roy McLoughlin, Associate Director at Cavendish Ware, shares his insights on why pension planning is more important than ever.

As part of Pension Awareness Week 2022, our guest author, Roy McLoughlin, Associate Director at Cavendish Ware boutique wealth management firm, shares his insights on why pension planning for your future is more important than ever.


Let’s talk about pensions

Pensions are a subject which, though not always exhilarating, do actually resonate with everyone. The only objection I have ever really experienced is “I won’t make retirement.” However, our actuarial friends soon contradict this (quite sombre!) point when demonstrating the mortality age in the UK is now in one’s eighth decade.

The point being that, whether you like it or not, one does need to make provision for decades in retirement. Whilst the state pension is not to be dismissed (for many on full NI records, it’s over £9k per annum) most people simply could not rely on that existence. Thus pension planning is arguably more popular and researched than ever before.

Employee pensions

Auto-enrolment, whereby all employees now have a pension, has been a game changer with take up rates estimated to be at 90%. The flexibility of pensions (on average we move jobs every 4 years) has also increased their popularity. And for those convinced they will die pre-retirement, death benefits are paid with no tax.

Pension carry forward

There are some great ways of paying in any backdated pension contributions by use of something called carry forward. This inevitably leads to the subject of “what will I get back from my pension at retirement?” All insurers have great projection tools which we would encourage clients to spend some time on. After all, this is your money.

Also pensions are the best example of compound growth that you could ever wish to see. Compounding was described by none other than Einstein as the Eighth Wonder of the World, so it’s worth googling to remind yourself of its power.

Self-employed pensions

Finally, if any of you are self-employed or one-person companies, pensions are worth exploring. Firstly, due to the tax breaks, but mainly because there is no auto-enrolment and it’s your choice (and we would argue responsibility) to pay into your own pot.

There are a lot of reasons to at least explore your current (or new) arrangements, but I can assure you of one stark reality. Doing nothing is a very dangerous option and to rely on the state will not be a great standard of living.


Roy has been an adviser for over 30 years looking after a portfolio of clients with a particular focus on the creative sector from media and TV production to architecture and design. His clients include senior executives, freelancers, business owners, partnerships and SMEs. In 2021 Roy was awarded Money Marketing’s inaugural Adviser Personality of the Year, crowning the many industry awards he was won over the years, unusually both in the individual and corporate market. Roy is a passionate campaigner for affordable financial advice and particularly the importance of insurance to protect and support financial wellbeing. He was a founding member of the Income Protection task force and was integral in setting up the multi-award winning Seven Families campaign.

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