Guidance on pensions proves to be a success

Moira Macfarlane
Moira Macfarlane

New figures highlighting the success of a pensions guidance service have been welcomed by Citizens Advice Northumberland.

The charity hosts regular sessions, which are delivered by Pension Wise guidance specialists, in many locations across the area.

An Ipsos Mori survey of nearly 2,000 Pension Wise customers across the UK revealed that 85 per cent of people said that the guidance they received means they now have a better understanding of their pension options.

Nearly nine in 10 (89 per cent) of those who have an appointment go on to take further action on their pension saving.

Following the pension reforms in April 2015, people approaching retirement have greater freedom over how they can use their pension pots. With a number of options available, people are now able to take a lump sum, take out an annuity or a mixture of both.

The most common actions taken by people after a Pension Wise appointment, were speaking to their pension provider (60 per cent), making a decision on which option to take (57 per cent) and calculating their retirement income (56 per cent).

Pension Wise is a free and impartial government guidance service designed to help people understand what they can do with their pension savings. The research finds more than 9 in 10 people (94 per cent) who have used the service would recommend it to others.

Citizens Advice Northumberland offers face-to-face Pension Wise sessions which are available to book now. The 45-minute appointments are tailored to the individual, taking into account the value of their pension and their plans for retirement.

Moira Macfarlane, chief executive of Citizens Advice Northumberland, said: “Citizens Advice offers face to face Pension Wise appointments at a number of sites across the region, including our own in Alnwick, Berwick, Hexham, and Blyth, and it’s great to know we’ve played our part in achieving these great results.

“Pensions can be a confusing topic but these figures show the real benefit people get from having a Pension Wise appointment.”