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Pensions Explained

To afford the lifestyle you want when you retire, you need to do something about it today - the buts stop here. It may be tempting to say, "But retirement is a long way off", yet it's never too early to start investing in order to protect your future. To find out more, read our 'Pensions Guide' section by clicking 'Open Guide'. Once you have read that, why not view our 'What is a Pension?' video, presented by Lisa, our online guide.

Pensions guide

Our easy overview introduces you to the basics of pensions, provides information on the products available and gives you helpful hints on things to consider.

Funds are a way for you to pool your money with other investors so you can:

  • Take advantage of buying in bulk.
  • Spread your money across lots of different investments.
  • Get the services of an expert who you wouldn't normally have access to.

You can usually choose which funds to put your money in and change the funds you invest in. There are lots of different types of fund and there are many options to choose from; if you're not sure which one(s) to pick a financial adviser will be able to make recommendations for you.

The differences between funds are usually in the:

  • Way they're managed
  • Assets they invest in (eg. shares, bonds, property, cash)
  • The level of risk they take and the amount of reward they're aiming for.

Different funds take different levels of risk. A lower risk fund might aim for steady growth over a long period of time with a low risk of losing money. A high risk fund will usually be aiming for higher long term growth but there is more risk that you might lose money.

The types of assets that a fund invests in are an important factor in the returns you're likely to get and the amount of risk that you're taking. A high risk fund might invest in shares of companies in either the UK or overseas which have the potential to provide good long term returns but are also likely to see large ups and downs in value. A low risk fund might invest in government bonds which normally offer lower returns and a lower risk of losing money, but may struggle to keep up with inflation.

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Pension Tracker via MyAviva

Pension Tracker is an exciting way for you to take control of your Aviva pension plan. It's an online service that helps you manage your pension arrangements any time that suits you, much as you can with internet banking.

Let us help you sort out your finances

Again if your response is, "But I don't really understand how to plan my finances better", we're here to help. It's all about getting the information you need to make the right decisions. Our tools and calculators can help you get to grips with your finances and plan for the future.

Pension calculator
See whether you're on track to fund the retirement you want.

What Next?

Now you've learnt more about pensions, you can compare the features of Aviva's pension plans, or apply for your chosen option:

Stakeholder Pension

You can start a Stakeholder Pension plan with as little as £20.

It's a tax-efficient way of investing for your retirement, but bear in mind that you won't have access to the money in your pension fund until you retire.

Find out more about stakeholder pensions

Personal Pension

You can make regular or one-off payments into a Personal Pension plan and stop, restart and change your payments to suit yourself.

It's a tax-efficient way of investing for your retirement, but bear in mind that you won't have access to the money in your pension fund until you retire.

How to apply for a Personal pension

WC03077 07/2014