Our top tips for managing your money in retirement

Author: Dave Worrall

Chartered Financial Planner

View profile

Whilst most of us dream of a long and happy retirement, free from the worries and stresses of working life, with the rising fuel and energy bills and UK inflation (currently at over 10%), many people have been left questioning whether their future income will be sufficient to provide the retirement they hope for.

For those who are recently retired or indeed nearing retirement, the options with regards to structuring their income in retirement to achieve their own goals may appear more daunting than ever.

How best to structure retirement income is based largely on each individuals personal and financial circumstances, attitude to risk and principally their specific objectives for retirement.

Those in the best financial position as they reach retirement are often the people who began planning early, giving consideration to the benefits of being able to draw an income from various tax-efficient sources when they reach retirement itself.

If you are approaching retirement, key options to consider are:

State Pension

For many, the State Pension will provide the basis of their income in retirement. The full new State Pension is £185.15 per week (£9,627.80 per annum), and can currently be claimed when reaching age 66. The State Pension age is scheduled to increase gradually from May 2026, and with many looking to retire in their early 60’s, it is important that consideration is given regarding how to bridge the gap between finishing work and drawing your State Pension.

Your State Pension depends on the number of qualifying years – you can check your personal projection via the government gateway:

Annuity Purchase

Low interest rates and increased life expectancy have caused annuity rates to tumble over recent years, however, one benefit of the current economic climate has been a notable rise in annuity rates over the past 12 months. Benchmark rates in October 2022 are at their highest level since early 2009, making an annuity a more attractive consideration once again.

An annuity provides you with a regular, guaranteed income in retirement, and can be bought using some or all of your pension pot. Income can be paid for life or for a fixed number of years, with guarantee periods, indexation and spousal benefits built in depending on individual circumstances.

Defined Benefit/Final Salary Schemes

Such schemes provide a guaranteed income for life based on your final or average salary, however they have reduced in popularity due to high running costs. The terms of each scheme are specific to individual employers, with the benefits to individuals are often being very attractive. Depending on your scheme, retirement may be taken from age 55, however taking benefits early may lead to a reduction in income so options should be considered carefully.

Defined Contribution/Occupational Pensions

Following the introduction of auto enrolment in 2012, Defined Contribution pensions have grown in popularity. It is important to review such pensions to ensure you are taking full advantage of the benefits your employer offers (e.g. up to what level will they match contributions, do they offer salary sacrifice etc).

Many employers’ schemes invest in a balanced lifestyle product as standard, which may not be aligned to an individual’s investment timeline or attitude to risk. Reviewing the suitability of such schemes ahead of retirement can be key to ensuring retirement income itself is maximised.


ISAs are a tax efficient and flexible vehicle that can be used to support taxable pension income in retirement. Regular ISA contributions whilst building towards retirement can make a significant difference to the tax efficiency of retirement income.

Venture Capital Trusts (VCT)

Particularly attractive for high earners and those already maximising their pension contributions, VCTs provide funding for smaller UK companies, with investments benefiting from income tax relief of 30% and crucially from a retirement income perspective, dividends are received free of income tax.

Whatever your financial objectives for retirement may be, it is vital to regularly review whether you are on track to achieve these, and if not what actions can be taken to help ensure your retirement is as long and happy as possible.

The key is to consider your position in advance and take steps to ensure you are on track sooner rather than later.

For advice on planning your retirement income strategy, speak to Dave Worrall on 01223 233331 or email dworrall@mmwealth.co.uk

Opinions constitute our judgement as of this date and are subject to change without warning. The value of investments, and the income from them, can go down as well as up, and you may not recover the amount of your original investment.

The information in this article is not intended as an offer or solicitation to buy or sell securities or any other investment, nor does it constitute a personal recommendation.

Read more blog posts

Get in touch today

We’ve built long lasting relationships on the strength of a good conversation, if you are looking for wealth management and independent financial planning advice or have any questions about the services we offer, please do get in touch.

T. 01223 233331

E. info@mmwealth.co.uk

Book a call with us Speak to a financial planner