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Most Brits still relying on state to fund retirement

A total of 65% of people are still relying on the state pension to provide income in retirement.


by Michelle McGagh on Mar 15, 2012 at 11:03

Most Brits still relying on state to fund retirement

The majority of Britons are relying on the dwindling state pension to fund their retirement, although a quarter of people are also looking to use their ISA savings when they retire.

A survey by shows 65% of people are relying on the state pension to provide them with an income in retirement, topping the list of income sources. But almost half, 47%, of people will also use a private pension to provide income and 25% will use their ISA savings.

People aged under 35 were less likely to choose the state pension as their main source of income in retirement, with 44% of people choosing this option.

Women were more likely than men to rely on their partner to provide pension income, with 14% of women choosing this option compared to 5% of men. Women were also less likely to count on a private pension; 41% of women chose this option compared to 47% overall and 54% of men.

Ways to pay: All Men   Women  Under 35s 35-54 55+  
State pension 65% 65%  64% 44% 62% 84%
Private pension 47% 54% 41% 39% 45% 56%
Other savings 26% 27% 24% 25% 19% 33%
ISA savings 25% 27% 22% 23% 21% 29%
Inheritance 10% 11% 9% 13% 13% 6%
Money released from home 10%  10% 9% 10% 12% 7%
My partner 95 5% 14% 8% 11% 9%
Other investments not in a pension 8% 9% 6% 4% 7% 11%
Rental income from investment property 5% 6% 5% 6% 6% 4%
National Employment Savings Trust 4% 4% 4% 5% 5% 2%

Karen Barrett, chief executive of, said: ‘We all have to take ownership of our own financial future and plan for our income in retirement accordingly, whether it is through just putting money into a savings account or actively contributing to a private pension.’

9 comments so far. Why not have your say?


Mar 15, 2012 at 13:13

Not surprising really - with our pension funds being degraded by high inflation and government raids, plus appalling annuity rates, nobody can afford to save the amounts required to secure a good pension. More and more people are realising just what poor value private pensions are.

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Peter Young Engineer

Mar 15, 2012 at 14:05

If you want to live as a pauper in your retirement, don't save, but life won't be much fun on circa £5k per annum.

Poor annuity rates are no reason not to save, either in ISA's or Pension Fund. If your employer is contributing there is no excuse at all.

You can choose how to invest the fund when you retire.

If you are in your thirties or forties today you do not have any idea what annuity rates are going to be when you are 65+. They may have returned to circa10%+ by then!!

Some annuity rates are better than others so it pays to shop around even today.

I am retiring shortly and by shopping around I increased my annual income from an annuity by 50%.

I could have taken draw down but I wanted certainty and protection for my partner if I die early and for very little reduction in income get gets 100% when I pop my clogs.

Yes there is a lot wrong with the current state of affairs but that does not excuse not saving for retirement in my view.

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Mar 15, 2012 at 15:06

I am surprised so many people are adding to their state pension by adding their own meagre private income from other sources. They are sacrificing their state benefits which the government then uses to finance wars and "project power" against little countries. That is how the Roman Empire collapsed and now the American empire is going that way. It is vanity, follie de grandeur, a mug'.s game.

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Anonymous 1 needed this 'off the record'

Mar 15, 2012 at 18:07

I AM retired. I have the state Pension, a useless annuity & several ISAs

The main PPP that I contributed to INSISTED that I had to buy an annuity - altho' I was able to choose the best from a bad choice.

This annuity pays me less per month than the income from a single £7000 ISA I have - & I contributed a lot more than £7000 to the PPP.

It still irks me very much that I could not use the pension pot to buy ISAs of my own choosing - instead of one of these inadequate annuities.

If ISAs had been available when I started contributing to the PPP (which I was told at the time by my employer was oh so good), I would have a lot more available income now.

I would never advise my son to save into any of the modern equivalents. Save regularly into decent ISA(s) instead.

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Mar 15, 2012 at 20:41

Since virtually every one living in UK will get a state pension, should the figure in the table not be nearly 100% ?

Those who said they were relying on state pension, never said exclusively on that.

In fact this survey seems to have been designed by amateurs working for Unbiased.

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Mar 15, 2012 at 20:58

I paid into a company pension for 14 years and 40 years later it is paying me £35 pm without indexation, t is taxable and the capital will go to the insurance co. when I die..

One ISA for £9000 is paying me more than that, the income is rising, it is tax free.and after I die it help my children's pension.

Private pensions are the biggest legalised robbery devised by crooks and government ministers with vested interests and I would not recommend them to my worst enemy. Retired people do not need pensions, they need income.

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J Reid

Mar 16, 2012 at 10:14

I paid into a company scheme for 5 years, and now 23 years after I left, it is paying me £440 per month index linked. I am glad I listened to my ex. boss when he told me not to let anyone talk me into transferring it after I left.

A year before I started to receive my pension, the company that had taken the business over contacted me to offer to add 10% to the pot if I would transfer it from the scheme, again I am pleased that I did not. So much depends on the unknowns for the average contributor when they set out in company schemes, and retiremnt is os far away.

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Mar 23, 2012 at 19:35

I retired 10 years ago and haven't had a rise in my private pension since so unlike workers whose pay may rise once the economy picks up, I will stay on this income for the rest of my life. The tax allowance for over 65s is very important to me. Certainly not a good budget for pensioners at all

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stephen crook

Aug 21, 2012 at 17:41

private pensions are the biggest legalised robbery devised.well said franco.

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