National Gardening Week 2019
National Gardening Week was started eight years ago by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and is an attempt to be the country’s biggest celebration of gardening. This year, National Gardening Week takes place from Monday 29 April to Sunday 5 May 2019 and the RHS is calling on gardeners up and down the country to share their love of home-grown produce with this year's theme – Edible Britain.
Now if you’re like us at TPAS, not very green fingered and haven’t managed to keep the office plants alive, we highly recommend you pay close attention to these gardening gurus throughout the week and don’t listen to anything we have to say about gardening! But, you should read on to find out how gardening and pensions go hand in hand.
Like plants, pensions also need to be tended and looked after in order for them to grow. So we’ve decided to give you a few tips for looking after your pots and ensuring that your benefits flourish.
Maiden tree – nurture your pension
A maiden tree is a young tree, usually less than a year old, that can be trained into any form required. If you’re just starting to save into a pension think of it as your maiden tree, while it might not look like much as first, know that you can nurture it by contributing regularly and (if you’re in a workplace pension) benefitting from employer contributions too, not to mention the tax-relief!
So, if you get a pay rise or a bonus or find you can free up some money by spending less somewhere else, think about paying a little more into your pension. What you put in now will pay off for you later and your pension should be able to grow into a savings pot that you’ll value.
Hardy perennial – make sure your pension stands the test of time
If you’re thinking of accessing your pension benefits (you need to be age 55 or older, unless you’re in serious ill health) you need to think about what you need now and what you’ll need in the future. People are living much longer and often underestimate the level of income they will need and how long they might live during their retirement. When it comes to accessing your pension, there are lots of options available to you, depending on the type of scheme you have and how much your benefits are worth. You need to think about what’s right for you and your personal circumstances – some decisions that you make are irrevocable (like Roundup – other brands are available) so don’t get bogged down in the weeds and just remember that it’s important that your pension continues to flourish like a hardy perennial throughout your later life!
Guaranteed miracle growth – sounds too good to be true?
While Miracle Gro claims to guarantee good growth, offers or promises of guaranteed rates of return (6-8%) or higher is something you should be wary of when trying to build your pension and investments. Remember, markets can go up as well as down and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Scammers use a variety of hooks and traps to lure you in, but you can find out how to spot, stop and protect yourself from scammers by reading more here.
These are just a few green fingered tips that we hope you’ll be able to think about when considering your pension. But, if you want to plant a question or query regarding your pension(s) not covered here, please contact our team here at TPAS (we are the Gardeners World equivalent for pensions and, for us, no question is too big or small).