69% of older people terrified of running out of money

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'Worried,even distraught, elderly woman.

George Osborne announced in the Budget that no-one will ever be forced to buy an annuity ever again. Instead, people will be able to withdraw what they like, spend what they like and make their own decisions. For some people this is clearly going to be a godsend, but for the vast majority of the over 55s it holds a major threat.

Some 69% of people are petrified that left to their own devices they'll run out of money.

Worried

Only 28% of people feel so overwhelmed that they wouldn't be able to take on the responsibility of managing their pension, but only 26% of people are completely comfortable with the idea - leaving 41% who feel relatively comfortable, and 5% who don't know what to think.

Meanwhile, 64% of people are concerned that they will make the wrong decision when deciding how to invest their money in retirement.

Aston Goodey, Director of Sales and Marketing for MGM Advantage commented: "With all the hubbub around the Budget, it is easy to forget people's appetite for loss and attitude to risk. From this research we can see although many people are comfortable managing their own money to provide a suitable income throughout retirement, almost one in three are not."

The positive side of this is that people will be able to choose whatever they are most comfortable with in retirement. Those 26% who cannot wait to run an investment portfolio and live off the proceeds will be able to do so. Meanwhile, the 42% of people who crave the security of an annuity income - and are willing to pay the price of a lower income in order to have that security - will be able to buy an annuity. And there will be any number of people who decide that the right approach is a mixture of the two.

Advice

It means that at the point of retirement it's going to be essential to get some decent advice to help you choose the option that's right for you.

In The Budget, Osborne promised that everyone retiring with a defined contribution pension will get free face-to-face guidance, but there's a major question mark over what that guidance will entail.

Crucially Osborne has stopped short of saying people will get 'advice', which means the guidance may end up being generic - and unable to take each individual's circumstances into account. There's also the risk that those offering the guidance will err on the side of caution - on order to avoid facing potential mis-selling issues further down the line.

It may be worth getting a second or third opinion from another body offering free guidance. These include organisations such as the Money Advice Service - which has a range of calculators to help you understand your situation. Meanwhile The Pensions Advisory Service has experienced volunteers who may be able to help.

However, the bottom line is that if you want specialist advice tailored to you, you'll need to pay for it - at a cost of around £150 an hour. It seems like a lot of money now, but when you consider the difference it can make to your retirement it may suddenly seem like a drop in the ocean.

Seven retirement nightmares

Seven retirement nightmares