Change your life
in an hour

Planning your retirement takes less time than you think

There’s still time to put things in place

As your retirement gets ever closer, it’s important to have all the facts so you have the best possible plan.

Why not take an hour to watch videos from experts, get to grips with pension basics, use our calculator to see what your pension pot could be worth and start planning for a comfortable future?

Pension Basics

Find out your next steps if you've left it late to save for retirement and your pension options.

Hear what a financial expert says and why financial advice could help you.

Explore your options and see what you could do if you feel you’ve not saved enough.

Think about your needs and what you might require in retirement.

Pension Tips

Gain insight from a behaviour expert and learn how to enjoy planning your future.

Be inspired by others’ stories and make the most of your retirement.

Your Plan

Discover how to make or review your plan and how to choose an adviser who can help you.

Use our calculators and weigh up different ways you can access your pension pot.

Share this site with someone else planning your retirement takes less time you think.

Change your life in an hour

Isn’t it amazing what you can achieve in an hour? Before you take your next steps towards a more comfortable retirement, why not encourage friends and family to join in by sharing our video?

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Pension Basics



Here’s a head start if you’re planning for a more comfortable retirement

Have I left it too late to save for retirement?

0:28 secs

What are my pension options?

0:38 secs

Want to explore ways you can access your pension pot when you’re 55? Find out your next steps if you feel you've left it late to save for retirement and your pension options.



TV personality and independent money expert Sarah Pennells explains what you might need in retirement, what to do if you need more money – and why financial advisers can help.

See how it works

Why is it a good idea to get financial guidance?

1:14 min

What should you do if you don’t think you’ve saved enough?

0:43 secs

Think about what you will need in retirement

1:15 min

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People have already made a start

Here are the top ten cities in the UK for visiting our Change your life in an hour website.

Key facts & figures


Did you Know

64% of 50-59 year olds are saving adequately for retirement

How much will you need?

Did you Know

£22,834 the average annual amount 50-64 year olds feel they will need for a ‘comfortable’ retirement


Did you Know

36% of people would seek advice about pensions.

Are you saving enough?

27% of 50-64 year olds plan to travel in their retirement.

19% of people expect to be looking after their grandchildren

Source: Scottish Widows 2016 Retirement Report.

Pension tips

So far, you’ve learned from a financial expert what you might need in retirement, what to do if you don't think you’ve saved enough – and how a financial adviser can help you plan.

Up next:

  • see why you need to carefully consider your decisions
  • get expert tips on how to enjoy planning your future
  • be inspired by how others are making the most of retirement.


Peter Ayton, Professor of Psychology at London City University, explains why it’s important to carefully consider your retirement plan – and how you can enjoy this.

See how it works

Why do you need to carefully consider your decisions

1:14 min

How can you enjoy planning your future?

1:02 min


Be inspired by other people's stories

Want to start a film club like William and Jehanna?

0:54 secs

Would you like to become an explorer like John?

1:03 min

Will you become a model like Bridget?

1:04 min


Your plan

So far, you’ve learned from the experts about making a plan and why it can be challenging to do so. You’ll also have a good idea of the ways you can access your pension pot.

Up next:

  • calculate how much your pension might be worth after tax
  • find out the questions you should ask financial advisers
  • share this site with someone who might benefit.

Calculate your future

Want to know more about what money you might have to support you when you retire? Use our articles and calculators to help plan your next steps.

Questions about the state pension? See how much state pension you might get.

How can you access your pension pot? Use our calculator to compare options.

How much tax might you pay on your pension if you take a cash lump sum? Use our tax calculator.

Review your plan

If you want to review your current plan, or put a new plan in place, your next step is to speak to your employer or contact an independent financial adviser.

A financial adviser will make sure you have the right plan but be aware that there may be a fee.

What types of Financial Advisers are there?

There are two types: Independent Financial Advisers and Restricted Advisers.

Both are regulated, have passed the same qualifications and can help you decide what pension is right for you. However, there are differences.

Independent Financial Advisers (IFAs) – give unbiased advice about the whole range of financial products from all the available companies.

Restricted Advisers – give advice on a limited range of products. They may specialise in one area, like pensions, or advise on products offered by a limited number of companies.

When you first speak to an adviser they must tell you in writing if they offer independent or restricted advice. If you are not sure, ask.

You can find a full list of authorised advisers on the Financial Conduct Authority website.

How should you choose a financial adviser?

  • Use an expert – for retirement advice, you can use a independent financial adviser or a restricted adviser
  • Find someone you can trust – ask your friends and family for a recommendation.
  • Discuss all their fees in advance – make sure you can afford their costs.
  • Get it in writing – you need a copy of their recommendations you can keep.

To make sure you can complain if things go wrong, you should also ensure they’re regulated by checking the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) register.

You may also find these websites useful:

  • – enter your postcode to find a nearby financial adviser.
  • – read reviews and ratings by clients of financial advisers.

How can you get the most from your first meeting?

During your meeting, we recommend you:

  • Take notes – so you can review them later.
  • Ask lots of questions – if you’re unhappy with the clarity of your adviser's explanations, you can ask further questions or think about choosing a new one.
  • Don’t sign anything in a hurry – make sure you’ve read and understood it.

What should you ask them?

Before your first meeting:

  • What type of adviser are you?
  • Are you regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)?
  • How long have you been advising clients?
  • What are your qualifications?
  • Do you often advise people in my earnings bracket?
  • Can you show me references from satisfied clients?
  • Do you charge a fee for the initial consultation?
  • How will you be paid, how much, and how often?
  • Is there anything your fee doesn’t cover?
  • Are there any areas you can’t advise me on?
  • Where and when will meetings take place?

During your meeting:

  • What are the risks?
  • What are the charges and how do they compare with those of similar products?
  • Why is this product the best for me?
  • How does it fit in with the other financial products I already have?

At the end of your meeting:

  • Don’t feel pressurised to sign up for anything if you need more time to think.
  • Take as much time as you need to consider or read proposals or Key Features documents.
  • Arrange a follow-up meeting.


We hope you agree that planning your retirement takes less time than you think – and that you’ve learned a lot in just an hour.

Want to find out more about planning for a comfortable retirement?

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Pensions are a long-term investment. The retirement benefits you receive from your pension plan will depend on a number of factors including the value of your plan when you decide to take your benefits which isn't guaranteed, and can go down as well as up. The value of your plan could fall below the amount(s) paid in. The tax treatment of your pension depends on your individual circumstances. Your circumstances and tax rules may change.