Dear Aunt Pecunia
I was a silly devil when I was younger. Instead of putting money away for the future, I blew it on holidays, fast cars and unsuitable men. I've finally paid off the loans and, for once, have extra cash. What’s the best product to save into? I need one which will stop me splurging all the funds in a mad moment. I don’t want to end up aged and penniless.
Aunt Pecunia says: I’m glad, AN, you’ve seen the error of pursuing a Ferrari lifestyle. What use is a muscle car when the only metal you’ll be putting your pedal to is a Zimmer frame? Aunt Pecunia also advises against investing in a white knight to sort out your finances. This kind of man is like a stock market rally: you can’t tell when one’s coming round the corner and inevitably there’s a crash.
Now you’re in your prime, your ideal product is probably a pension. With a few years to go, there’s still time to build up cash and get the tax rebates from the government. Basic rate taxpayers only have to put in £80 to get £100 in the pension, you see, and it’s churlish to turn down free money.
The earliest you can get the pension is age 55, by which time you might’ve grown out of yachts, toy-boys, Dior handbags and so on. Check what arrangements you have with your employer already. It might be easier to just top that up. Or see the SMM guide here to starting a personal pension outside of work. Don’t delay – you want to make your retirement more of a new Beamer than an old banger.