Have you checked your pension recently?

School of fish

Investing

Alistair Hardie

24th July 2014 at 2:54pm

The elevator to success is out of order.

You’re going to have to take the stairs.

One step at a time.

Oh well; every marathon starts with a single step and it doesn’t need to be a giant leap. In fact, small actions often lead to big results – a while back scientists couldn’t work out why their calculations on ocean currents didn’t match what they saw in real life. It turns out that the motion of every plankton, jellyfish, dolphin or marine creature can combine to control the currents in our oceans.

I doubt any of them even realise it (the fish, not the scientists).

I’ve come to learn that some things in life are better left alone: wasp nests; the thermostat in my house or arguments about the merits of a 1-route tram system. Well, in Edinburgh anyway.

One thing I do keep an eye on is my finances. With my banking it’s quite easy: I use my card nearly every day and I can track all my spending online. Who knew that a digital pig in a game could cost me £9.99?!

I do the same with my pension – admittedly not quite as often but enough to check that everything is okay.

Question time:

Do you have any idea how much your pension is worth right now?

How much (if anything) are you paying into it?

Does your employer add to it? Could they?

You can find out the answers to these things in most annual statements or if you check your pension online. It doesn’t take long to get a good idea of how things are going.

You might even feel better for it: our research has shown that nearly half of people who check their finances monthly feel optimistic about their financial future. Less than 4% of those who never check felt the same way…

In this recent heatwave my neighbour has taken to studiously mowing his lawn and caring for some odd purple plants. He does this every year. Come winter he gives up and it becomes messier than a Brazilian back four.

I can’t help thinking that if he kept on top of it just a little more often he might find things easier.

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