The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted on every
aspect of our lives, affecting individuals’ financial situation and for many,
their plans for retirement. If you are approaching retirement in the next 12
months, your plans should be under continuous review.
We take a look at new research which has highlighted the
attitudes and aspirations of this year’s retirees .
The pandemic has shifted attitudes and priorities across almost all aspects of
people’s lives, but specifically, the timing of retirement is one thing that
has changed for many. The research uncovered that 37% of people have sped up
their retirement date in the past 12 months. The opportunity to work from home
and escape the daily commute, has freed up time to enjoy other things.
It has provided a glimpse into what retirement might look
like and many like what they see. Some may have found themselves forced into an
early retirement due to a change in work circumstances or redundancy. While
others were doing the opposite with 12% deciding to delay retiring.
When you choose to retire is important, the timing of it can
limit or increase your earning potential prior to retiring. If you are
considering changing your retirement date, it is important to discuss with us
your updated plans so we can help you understand any impact this may have.
Traditionally when we think of retirement we think of the departure from
working life. Although people often look forward to giving up work as part of
their retirement plans, others have no intention of doing so fully.
Whether it be a financial or emotional driver, the growing
trend of working in retirement is clear from the research. Just 44% see
retirement as giving up work completely.
The rise in flexible working as a result of COVID-19 has
also been a contributing factor; making stepping back rather than stepping away
much more achievable than ever before with 22% planning a more flexible
retirement by simply reducing their hours.
Unsurprisingly traveling remains a key aspiration. However, research shows that
30% of people have had to reconsider their travel or holiday plans in
As a result of COVID-19, uncertainty around safety and
travel restrictions has led to more and more people choosing a ‘staycation’ or
investing in a UK based holiday home over heading overseas.
Whether you’re swapping the Côte d’Azur for the Cornish
coast or simply delaying your travel plans, it’s important to consider the
financial impact, if any, that changing your original plans may have.
Lockdown living forced many of us to reassess what is important. With 51%
worrying about not being able to do the things they want to in retirement.
As mentioned, travelling is one concern However, for 43% of
people, not being able to spend time with family and friends has been a worry.
For the peace of mind that another national lockdown won’t hinder the
opportunity to visit loved ones, there has also been a trend in cross-country
moves to be nearer to children and grand-children.
A move in retirement may not have been on the cards prior to
the pandemic, however, this may now have become a priority for many.
Reviewing your plan
In times of uncertainty, making a plan can seem like a waste of time. However,
it’s important to think ahead to retirement and review your plans for the
future, and even more so as we face up to the protracted coronavirus crisis.
It’s concerning to see some individuals accessing pension
funds earlier than planned with others thinking about this option. While this
may alleviate short term financial pressures, it leaves less of a retirement
fund to provide an income throughout what can be decades of retirement.
It’s important not to rush into making life changing
retirement decisions without first seeking professional financial advice. 3
 Research by Standard Life Aberdeen, carried out in February 2021 by 3Gem -
1000 adults, aged 55+ and still working.