Nearly a third of the over 50s are looking forward to a miserable retirement because they have less than £1,000 in the bank or have saved nothing.
The latest research shows 10% have not managed to set aside more than £1,000, while another 20% have no savings.
Nearly half (47%) admit that they have no plans for retirement and need to make a will, plan for inheritance tax or to decide their future living arrangements.
Jessica Galletley, financial services analyst at Mintel, the firm compiling the data, said: “There is still a societal taboo around discussing later life and death, resulting in people putting off planning for it.
Priority is enough to get by
“Financial planning for later life is essential for consumers to have a clear idea of the money they have left to live on once other issues have been taken care of, such as earmarking funds for care.
“With life expectancy rising, people may think they can afford to delay making plans. However, circumstances can change quickly at any age, especially later in life, meaning it’s important to do so sooner rather than later.”
Nearly three out of four over 50s told researchers that their priority was to ‘have enough to get by’, while 51% considered an up-to-date will important.
“Most consumers over age 50 are simply concerned with getting by financially in retirement,” said Galletley.
Ever changing rules
“Ever-changing rules regarding pensions mean that many people find the subject too complicated, whilst changes in the state pension age have made it difficult for people to know what amount of funds will be sufficient to see them through retirement.”
The study found that although many over 50s have no savings, they do have money tied up in the value of their homes.
But only 9% considered downsizing or equity release as a viable idea, while 72% said they wanted to stay in their home for as long as possible.
Although trillions of pounds are locked into property values, only £1 billion a year or about £11 million a day is advanced as later life lending, according to trade body the Equity Release Council.