Despite the introduction of pension freedoms bringing an increased need for advice, research from online pension adviser Wealth Wizards has revealed that the majority of Brits avoid seeking pension advice. More than half believe that pension advice will be too expensive and an astounding twenty-nine per cent of Brits don’t seek professional advice as they find discussing their finances and pension provision too embarrassing.
The research also looked at people’s understanding of pensions, showing that over half (53 percent) are confused by their pensions, with one in three pension savers having no idea how much they have or what their product offers. Many people expect their employer to provide them with advice but over one third (36 percent) of working Brits highlight a gap in knowledge, as their employer has never provided them with any pension support.
“With the introduction of pension freedoms and the roll out of auto-enrolment, there has never been a more critical time for people to understand their pensions and the options available to them. A huge amount of confusion still exists and its concerning that people are avoiding advice as they see it as an expensive and sometimes embarrassing option.”
Forty-three per cent of Brits said that they would welcome alternative, lower priced options, such as online advice. However, there was a clear lack of knowledge surrounding online advice, as those who were unsure about turning to the web stated the lack of regulation as their main reason, despite the fact that fully regulated online advice is available
“There is now fully regulated, online advice available to individuals, ensuring advice is low-cost, while removing the need for a potentially embarrassing face to face conversation. It is clear that many people don’t want to spend hours discussing their pension options and online advice can provide personalised recommendations in just fifteen minutes,” Firth continued.
The research showed that nearly half, 46 percent,of 65s had never seen a financial adviser as they believed they were too expensive, despite being near retirement age. This same group were also the least likely to turn to online advice.