Savings levels for over-55 have vastly improved as they attempt to cushion themselves against the rising cost of living and the fear of not having enough money in retirement, Aviva has claimed today.
In a poll that looked at 1,000 adults across three ages of retirement: pre-retirees (55-64), retiring (65-74) and the long-term retired (over 75), Aviva found that total savings and investments reached a high of £18,632 per households in the first quarter of the year. This is the highest level recorded since Q3 2012 when savings stood at £17,750.
The pension provider added the 65-74 age group had the largest savings pots at £25,938 compared with £13,158 for the 55-64s and £13,750 for the over 75s. On average, households were putting away £198 a month in savings.
Aviva added that savings and investments were now providing incomes for a larger number of over-55s. Nearly a third (29%) of those polled named savings and investments as a source of income compared with 24% who said the same last year and 25% in previous years.
Despite these increased savings, Aviva found that more than a quarter (28%) of respondents admitted to not having had a conversation with either their spouse or family about their retirement finances.
Nearly two thirds (64%) of over-55s said they had revealed their financial retirement plans to their spouse, but only a fifth (20%) said they had not had a discussion because they did not have a full view of their personal finances. Among the youngest age group (55-64), almost one third (32%) admitted to not having discussed retirement plans.
Additionally, 21% of all respondents said they would like guidance on how they could make the most of their retirement income.
Clive Bolton, Aviva's managing director of retirement solutions, said: 'These findings reveal a stark difference between what people want to do about their retirement finances in respect of their families, and what they put into practice.
'It is a matter of finding the right solutions with the help of professional guidance and having open conversations with everyone who could be affected by the choices made at retirement.'
Commenting of the findings, Malcolm McLean, a senior consultant at Barnett Waddingham, said people were finally getting the message that they need to plan and save for later life if they are going to achieve the standard of living they would wish to have in retirement.
McLean noted that it was worrying that 28% of the people surveyed admitted to not talking about their retirement finances.
He acknowledged that it was a difficult subject but urged the pensions industry to encourage couples to discuss and share their plans.