I am 33 year old and I haven't been contributing enough into my pension - welcome to the SPC (small pension club). I am sure quite a few people in the UK can relate to this.
I only recently started to think about my pension - before my view was that I am too young bother about a pension. I even said this when I received a cold call about pension, and I was 30! Now I am realising I couldn't have been more wrong.
I am very fortunate to have a good job (I am an engineer) and my company has a flexible pension contribution - it lets us choose how much to contribute to the pension. I live in London and enjoy travelling so you can guess that my preference was to get cash now rather then think about getting old.
At the same time I am a bit obsessed with loyalty cards (I have at least 15) and offers, so I thought wouldn't it be great if instead of specific store points we could be all getting pension points. That's how Pension Tree idea came to life, to see if it had legs I started to do some homework.
Recent research showed that almost £6bn worth of points have not been claimed from the top 10 loyalty schemes alone; all this money could be going into our pension! At the same time I have discovered that statistics show that the average UK woman’s pension pot is 1/3 of man’s, this is an appalling situation.
Considering women often do most of the household shopping I aim to help UK women grow their pensions by using their spending power.
To do this I will create a relationship with a multitude of vendors that cover a majority of a typical household expenses (supermarkets, clothing stores, petrol stations, pharmacies, clothing). Every pound spent will add a point to an additional pension pot, nominal value of a point will be defined with each vendor. Contributions will then be made into the clients pension of choice (ultimately we hope to offer pensions ourselves). Inviduals may also benefit from HMRC %25 tax relief, subject to status.
This account will be an alternative to the currently offered loyalty cards (Tesco, Boots etc). So we can all actually benefit from these points and unlock these £6bn worth of points!
The larger plan is to offer a pension management service that would combine existing individuals' pensions. While the product is focussed on women, anyone can use it.
Let's grow our pension trees!