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A survey of 2,000 people by has revealed that 21% of British workers currently have no pension savings.

The average British worker earns £31,493 and has a total of £17,462 saved in their pension pot. Of those that are saving for a pension, 80% said that they didn’t know how much they should be saving or how much they will need when it comes to retiring. Some of those surveyed estimated that you would need around £275,000 in order to enjoy a comfortable retirement.

A quarter of those surveyed knew how much they have already saved but the same amount didn’t know how much they pay in each month.

On average, people don’t start paying into their pension until they are about 27 years old. 5% said that they are unable to make payments until they’re in their 40s.

The survey showed that millennials are on average starting to pay into their pension aged 23. On the other hand, the over 55s surveyed admitted that they had left it until they were about 30 years old. This could be linked to the increasing number of millennials choosing to start their own business and go freelance because they’re more conscious of missing out on a workplace pension.


State pension confusion

Two thirds of respondents could not guess how much state pension they would get and another 40% were unaware at what age they become eligible to start receiving their pension. Most people said that they were hoping to receive a pension at age 65.

HR manager at, Catherine Bannan said:  “It’s worth remembering that by law, every employer needs to provide a Workplace Pension Scheme by 2018. As businesses, we need to ensure that we match the minimum percentage of our employees’ ‘qualifying earnings’.

“Employers also have an obligation to educate their employees on how the Workplace Pension Scheme operates, and how they can ensure they start futureproofing their retirement as soon as possible.”


Career differences

The careers with the biggest pension pots are in law enforcement and security, with an average amount of around £200,000. This is followed by people working in transport at £123,169 and property or construction at £111,026.

The careers associated with putting in the least amount into pensions were those in the marketing and media professions.

95% of people in law enforcement currently put money into a pension. This is followed by those working in science and pharmaceuticals at 90% and insurance at 89%. People working in agriculture and environment were the least likely to have a pension.


Are you currently saving for a pension? What advice would you give others? Please leave your thoughts in the comments!


About The Author

Kara Copple

An experienced business and finance writer, sometimes moonlighting as a fiction writer and blogger.

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