Chichester, West Sussex (PRWEB UK) 8 January 2014
Independent consumer comparison website PayingTooMuch.com has produced a seven point checklist as a basic guide to help consumers before purchasing a retirement income (annuity).
1. Don’t just accept your pension provider’s offer without shopping around, either direct or from an annuity provider they have an affiliation with.
2. Use a company that compares all open market providers. Not every broker compares all the available open market providers so you may be missing out on a higher rate.
3. Compare like for like. There are different options available; level or increasing income, single annuity or an income for your dependant too, and all with or without a guarantee period.
4. Disclose all medical conditions as they often contribute to receiving a higher income (an enhanced annuity).
5. Track your annuity rate. Use a company that recalculates your proposed annuity and chart it on the lead up to you starting the annuity so you get a feel for whether rates are improving or decaying between the periods when you start researching your options and when you retire.
6. Beware of investment backed annuities offering a higher initial annuity. As they are reliant on stock market performance to support this higher level of income for the rest of your life, investment backed annuities do not provide a guaranteed level of income and could fall in the future.
7. Understand any jargon used. If your pension company uses confusing terminology ask them to clarify what they mean in plain English, or seek out a specialist who can guide you so you understand without feeling uncomfortable.
Alison Richards, PayingTooMuch’s Head of Annuities said, "Once an annuity has started the benefits cannot be changed so selecting the most appropriate annuity and then getting the best possible rates is crucial as it affects the rest of your (and partner’s) life.. Yet many people are still not shopping around.
"Our simple checklist is designed to help those who are uncertain of the right questions to ask and should be the very least people consider before either seeking professional advice (to be aware) or executing the decision themselves. We would go so far as to say these points should be included in all wake up packs issued by the pension providers."
PayingTooMuch.com launched its fully online, personalised, consumer annuity quote calculator in April this year, which today compares 13 annuity providers, more than the market leader, and factors in an individual’s health and lifestyle (like smoking and being overweight), taking into consideration over 3100 medical conditions.
For further comment please contact:
Tel 01243 784000
Alison Richards, mobile 07885 619785
Michael Ward, mobile 07825 368656
Concise Public Relations Ltd
Tel 0207 100 3960
Stephanie Spicer, mobile 07879 811102
Martin Wood, mobile 07946 527240