A new survey shows that more than two in five people in Ireland without a pension have either started one or delayed their planned retirement due to the cost of living crisis.
The survey was commissioned by Pension Awareness Week.
It also reveals that 4% of pensioners have already spent their pensions in order to deal with rising energy and other costs.
The research polled more than 1,000 people nationwide in late August and early September this year.
Conducted by Behavior and Attitudes (B&A) on behalf of Pension Awareness Week 2022, which runs throughout this week from September 19 to September 23.
Pension Awareness Week aims to raise awareness about retirement planning and help people take responsibility for their long-term savings.
Participants include Aviva, Irish Live, Royal London Ireland, Zurich Live, Liddell, Davie, ISME, Pension Authority, Retirement Planning Board of Ireland, Life Insurance Association of Ireland, Brightwater Employment Experts, Irish Association of Pension Funds, Insurance Ireland, Parents and Brands, Allen Retirement and Finance and founders of the initiative Moneycube.ie.
Today’s survey also found that 43% of people in Ireland do not own any form of pension product, with 63% of that group reporting that they cannot afford to save for retirement and pay their monthly bills.
This percentage rises to 72% among 35-49 year olds.
31% of those without a pension say they delayed their retirement due to the high cost of living, and another 11% delayed their retirement for the same reason.
Among those with a pension, the increase in the cost of living did not affect retirement savings for the vast majority (69%).
But 18% either stopped their payments, delayed their planned retirement, reduced their pension contributions, or poured their money into a pension product.
Today’s survey also shows that 38% already know they won’t have enough money saved for retirement in the same number, believing they will need to work longer than they intended due to insufficient pensions.
It also reveals that only one in ten who do not have a pension have discussed retirement options with their workplace. Even among those with a pension, interest in their performance is low as one in five of the money in which he invests his pension has not materialized.
Meanwhile, women are less likely than men to receive a pension, with only 48% of women saying they have some form of pension compared to 65% of men.
There is also a regional disparity among pension savers, with 63% of people in Dublin having some form of pension. But that number drops to 54% of people living in the rest of the country.
Ralph Benson, founder of PAW and head of financial advisory at Moneycube.ie, said today’s research shows there are two sides to the cost-of-living crisis story.
“What has become clear is its long-term implications for the financial security of individuals. On the one hand, there are those who have a surplus every month. Despite rising energy costs and other essentials, they will likely be able to survive with minor adjustments to their finances,” He said.
“On the other hand, we have people for whom the margins are much tighter, and so they have to make decisions now that will affect when they can retire and the quality of life they will enjoy when they do,” Benson said.
“This research also reveals that most people haven’t checked their pension performance and fewer know how much they’ll need in retirement. Pension Awareness Week gives people a chance to join the conversation about building your retirement plans and checking your financial health,” he added.