Do nothing leave it for now and decide later

Leave it for now and decide later

You may not want to take your retirement savings right now. That's fine – you can leave your retirement savings where they are. They'll stay invested, and you can take them when the time's right.

If you don't think your retirement savings are going to give you the income you need, you can leave it invested.

  • You may still be able to pay in to your retirement savings plan. And, any employer payments can still be paid in too
  • You can carry on working. It's your decision when to stop.

Things to be aware of

When is the right time to retire?

You may be able to get an idea of when's the best time for you to retire by using our tools and calculators.

Work out:

You don't need to stop working to take your retirement savings.

Keep your employer or pension company updated

It's really important you let your pension company or your employer know if you are not intending to take your retirement savings on the date shown on your plan.

Change your retirement age

Taking your state pension

It's important you find out when you can take your state pension and how much it will be. Calculate when you'll reach state pension age and how much you may get in today's money on
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Your age

If you are approaching age 75, you may not be able to stay invested in your current plan. Many plans require you to take your retirement savings or stop making payments before you're 75. You'll need to check with your pension company to see if this applies to you.

The value of your savings may fall

If you leave your retirement savings invested, they may not increase in value over time. If they fall in value, you may receive less when you do take your retirement savings.

Consider your investment funds

Investments are complex but, generally, those with greater risk have the potential to produce higher returns but also have the potential for greater loss.

With-profit funds

If you're invested in with-profits, you should check with your pension company to make sure that delaying taking benefits beyond the retirement age shown on your plan does not affect what you might get back.


If you're thinking of buying an annuity later, there are no guarantees that annuity rates will improve in the future. So, as well as missing out on immediate income, you can't be sure you'll receive more in the future.

For example, if you could buy an annuity giving you £5,000 a year today, but you defer for five years and end up buying an annuity giving you £5,500 a year, you'll have missed out on £25,000 in income (5 years x £5,000). It will take 50 years to make up the lost income.

Tax and law

You'll see a lot of information about tax and law on this website. We've based this on our understanding of current UK law and HM Revenue and Customs practice, as at 6 April 2015. Bear in mind, any changes to these rules, or to your personal circumstances, could affect what you get from your retirement savings.

Annuities -
how do they work?

If you're looking for a regular secure income to see you through the rest of your life, then an annuity could be the route for you.

Annuities explained

Drawdown -
how does it work?

Drawdown lets you take some or all of your tax-free cash, leaving the rest of your retirement savings invested.

Drawdown explained

Cash lump sum -
how much can I take?

You can take a cash lump sum from the retirement savings you've built up over the years – you don't have to take it all at once.

Cash lump sums explained

Looking for advice?

You can get free and impartial guidance from Pension Wise. We can also help you find a financial adviser to give you the advice we can't.
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How to get advice

Pension wise

Free, impartial, government service

Pension wise
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How much money might I need?

Start building a picture of how much income you might need each month with our easy-to-use interactive calculator.

Use our tools

Get in touch

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