Don't regret not putting money aside for your golden years . . .
Published 19/01/2014 | 02:30
Regrets . . . which of us do not have a few of them? People report that among the most common sources of regret as they grow older are picking the wrong career path, with others still hankering after the one that got away. And not saving enough for retirement seems to feature every time that a survey is done on people of advanced years.
When you look back on your life what will your financial regrets be, and might now not be a time to do something to avoid ending up having these regrets?
I was reminded of all of this recently because my father died. He lived a full life and reached the age of 86, but personal finances would never have been his strong point.
Therefore, reaching old age with financial regrets is something I am keen to avoid, and so should we all.
When asked what they would have done differently, saving more into a pension tends to feature strongly when older people are asked about their finances.
If you want to maintain your current standard of living when you no longer earn a salary, then you will need to build up a retirement nest egg now.
Getting older means big medical costs, not to mention living, and day-to-day expenses.
The best way to ensure you have the money when you need it in retirement is to put enough away today.
You should aim for around 20 per cent of your salary to go into your pension fund, if you do not have a public sector pension arrangement.
Overspending seems to be another big reason for remorse when people in their senior years are asked about their finances.
We all overspend at different times in our life, but if it becomes a habit then we need to confront it now.
If you spend without knowing how much you shelled out until the credit card statement arrives then you have a problem.
It is possible you are a social spending or a "it was on sale" spending.
They key to preventing yourself from overspending is to replace your reason for overspending with something else.
The sheer scale of the mortgage arrears crisis means it is fairly safe to assume that close to 100,000 people who are behind on their mortgage repayments, and the more than 30,000 in trouble with buy-to-let investments, now regret buying a house.
Then there are the hundreds of thousands of others who are in negative equity, as the value of their mortgage is much greater than what their home is now worth.
If you are considering buying a house, make sure that you do not end up with what is known as buyer's remorse by making sure to only buy when the time is right for you, not when everyone else says it is.