Self-employed view property as safest way to save for retirement

Thirty-eight per cent of self-employed workers see property as the safest way to save for their retirement, new data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.

This compares to just 19% of the self-employed who view an employer pension, and another 19% who view a personal pension, as the safest options for retirement saving.

Data published by the ONS from its latest Wealth and Assets Survey, using responses from 2,053 self-employed workers, revealed that this group also view ISAs (10%) and savings accounts (5%) as the safest ways to save for retirement.

From a larger group of 10,483 employees used for the survey, however, 52% indicated that they thought an employee pension was the safest way to save for their retirement – compared to just 23% of employees favouring property as the safest option.

Another 340 people who are unemployed were used for the survey, with 33% of this group favouring an employer pension as a safer option for retirement, compared to property (27%).

“Today’s data shows that the self-employed continue to see property as the safest way to prepare for their retirement – outstripping pensions by some distance,” Royal London pension specialist, Helen Morrissey, commented.

“While property has its place in a retirement planning strategy, care must be taken not to be overly reliant on any one asset, as if prices fall then retirement plans can unravel.

“Boosting pension participation among this group is vital and yet they remain frozen out of auto-enrolment – a policy that has boosted the retirement prospects of millions. This is something the Government must review urgently.”

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