A £200million luxury retirement home in Knightsbridge has been given the go ahead. The seven-storey development will include 34 apartments expected to cost at least £5 million each.
As well as the obligatory 24-hour medical centre, parking spaces for mobility scooters and a hydrotherapy pool, the property will also feature a secret tunnel with a direct link to neighbouring Harrods. This will allow residents to shop without having to cross busy roads or come into contact with the ‘great unwashed’.
The ‘super-prime’ development is one of a growing number of properties for ‘silver hipsters’ or ‘older people with aspirations for a great lifestyle’.
Whether retiring in such splendour or not, don’t we all have aspirations for a happy retirement? No one actually wants to retire without the means to enjoy life. The problem is, despite saving diligently for your later life, it can be difficult to get a real sense of control over your promised pension pot.
After many years of making a profit, the NHS pension scheme is now at a crucial turning point. As more and more staff who have paid into the scheme reach retirement age, the pension will move into the red. In this financial year, it is expected to cost the health service some £10billion, almost one tenth of its entire £116billion budget. Of course, the situation will get worse every year with the scheme paying out more than it receives in contributions.
With cash-strapped hospitals, doctors’ shortages and increased waiting lists, how long will the situation be tenable?
At the same time, the increased taxation on ‘excess’ pension savings in recent years has served as a disincentive for individuals to save more for their retirement. The government’s message that we should all accumulate for old age is being significantly diluted by its own actions.
The only stance to take is to work out what is really important to you. Work with someone who can help you understand your aspirations and focus on how you can achieve those.
And don’t have all your eggs in one basket – even a basket that is gift-wrapped and backed by the government.