A third of over-40s homeowners plan to work beyond state pension age

Almost one in three (31%) UK homeowners over the age of 40 who are not yet retired are intending to work beyond their state pension age, according to new research from Canada Life.

The expectation to work past the state pension age is coupled with anxiety, Canada Life’s findings suggested, as 39% of UK homeowners aged between 40 and 50 and currently working are worried about their job prospects leading into retirement.

This is compounded by the 987,500 homeowners over the age of 45 who are currently on furlough, which is due to finish at the end of September.

The research, based on a study among 1,020 UK homeowners aged 40 and above, found that fears of funding retirement were another driver of working beyond state pension age. Nearly a third (31%) of homeowners over 40 who are currently working believe they cannot afford to retire when they want to, while a further 30% are unsure whether they can.

When asked how they plan to access their pension savings, 27% of respondents indicated that they are planning to access their pension savings as soon as they become available, while a further 25% plan to access their private and state pension savings only once they hit state pension age.

Just 10% said they plan to delay accessing all their pension savings while they continue to work into their retirement.

Canada Life technical director, Andrew Tully, said there has been a “seismic shift away from traditional retirements”, driven by economic and social trends.

“It simply isn’t the cliff edge event anymore,” Tully said. “The desire to continue working beyond state pension age is coupled with the fact that many people are nervous about their employment prospects in later life.

“However, for many, this is coupled with a desire to access their pension early. While this may help achieve some financial security in the short-term it means there are substantial doubts about the sustainability of the pension being able to support them through later life.”

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