Pension contributions should begin before age 22

Nearly half (45%) of respondents believe people should begin contributing towards a pension before they reach the age of 22 to ensure they have a comfortable retirement, according to research by software and services organisation Sage.


Its research, which surveyed 2,040 UK adults, found that six out of 10 respondents expect to work past the retirement age to earn enough money to live on in their later years.

Nearly a fifth (17%) believe they will have to downsize their home to fund retirement, while 6% expect they will have to sell their home to live after they stop working.

The research also found:

  • 12% of respondents have already opted out of an auto-enrolment pension scheme or plan to do so.
  • 18% of respondents have not heard of pensions auto-enrolment.
  • 61% of respondents found out about the change in legislation through newspaper articles or the government’s advertising campaign.

Lee Perkins (pictured), managing director of the small and start-up business division at Sage, said: “The findings underline why automatic enrolment on pension schemes is so important, and why employers must engage employees early around the change.

“It’s no secret the UK is sat on a ticking pensions time bomb, but if more people understood what auto-enrolment meant for them, they might be less worried about the future and their retirement.

“The way employers approach auto-enrolment is likely to have a significant impact on employee loyalty and retention, so it’s vital that all organisations look at this early and get it right.

“With people living longer, the retirement age is naturally going to go up, but simply working longer will not solve the pensions crisis. As a nation, we need to fundamentally change the way we think about saving for our future, and auto-enrolment should help focus people’s minds and their wages, and make sure we are saving above and beyond what auto-enrolment currently dictates.”