The new free BenPal pension modeller app is hoping to take the pain out of pensions. Available on the iPad and iPhone, it can help you work out exactly how much you’ll have when you retire or how much you’ll need to save to maintain your current lifestyle.
The colourful graphics and touchscreen instructions are designed to appeal to a generation that wouldn’t normally think of pensions.
Once you have downloaded the BenPal app from the iTunes store, you are invited to input your personal details including income and current pension contribution. You can also add in any previous pension savings.
The app shows your likely pension from a defined contribution (DC) scheme in bright, simple graphics. You can see at a glance your likely retirement income once you have purchased an annuity and the size of the tax-free lump sum you will be entitled to take. If you don’t like what you see, you can close the ‘pension gap’ by increasing your contribution rate, raising your retirement age or factoring in a pay rise. In each case, the graphics change instantly to show how much nearer you are to your goal.
JTL Benefit Solutions, the firm behind BenPal, see the new app as a natural way to engage with new customers. Director Charlie Carrick says: ‘The best way to encourage UK employees to engage with their pension is to make it simple to understand and easy to access.’ Of the BenPal app, he says: ‘We hope it helps the wider community to appreciate that pension planning in a DC world means taking greater responsibility and personal control, and having a bit of fun at the same time.’
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