Changing Job Pension Action List

Expats have more than most to think about when switching jobs as they are often moving countries and adapting to a new culture as well.

It’s no surprise some important financial matters like pensions are sometimes ignored in favour of day-to-day living.

New research from investment firm Fidelity Internationalfound that one in five people moving jobs did not consider sorting out their pension as important.

To help with making pension decisions, the firm’s associate director for personal investing, Ed Monk, has put together a checklist of issues savers should consider:

  • Saving grace- Make sure you know how much you are paying into a pension and what the employer is contributing plus how the amounts are boosted by any tax relief.

“Try and pay in at least what you were before switching jobs and more if you can,” said Monk.

  • Mix up your investmentsThink about risk and do not keep all your savings in similar investments, mix them a bit for an even spread across different markets.

“There may be a choice about how your money is invested. Check your scheme to make sure yours is invested in line with your aims and attitude to risk,” said Monk.

  • Consolidate to improveGrouping separate pensions into one pot makes checking investment performance easier and helps you monitor how your savings are doing, while reducing costs.

“Whether consolidating will work for you, and where you should do it, depends on a combination of factors, including investment costs, exit fees, the benefits of schemes and the value you place on the ease of having all your pots in one place, so it’s worth doing a bit of homework before making the decision,” said Monk.

  • Don’t surrender your benefitsBefore switching or stopping contributions to a scheme, check you benefits as some older schemes may offer features you will lose and cannot replace if you give them up.

“It is also very important to understand if your old scheme comes with any benefits that you will be giving up by leaving. An old scheme might allow you to take your money earlier, for example, or will perhaps allow you to buy a higher income in the future with a guaranteed annuity rate,” said Monk.