How to Retire Early

Get Your Pension Before You Retire

Ever wondered when you could get access to your pension? Or if it’s possible to get your pension earlier than your initial life plan? It’s possible!
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Ever wondered when you could get access to your pension? Or if it’s possible to get your pension earlier than your initial life plan? It’s possible!

At the finale of your career, it’s natural to start considering your retirement. You might even be thinking of retiring earlier than you’d planned. If so, then there are a few things you’ll need to think about before you cash in your pension.

You might be so tired of working, and you might want to retire as early as possible. However, it’s good to know more about your financial situation before doing so. For example, consider how much you’ll receive monthly and think if that would be sufficient for you. In other words; can you afford early retirement, or do you still need to work a few more years?

Does it make sense financially to retire early? Here are five questions you need to ask yourself:

1. What Rules Are There When Retiring Early?

It’s your choice when you start or stop working. However, when it comes to your pension, you don’t have a say. Meaning, you’ll only gain access to your pension funds once you turn 55, and not a moment before then. Good news is that new rules were set up in 2015, which allow pension savers to control their money more than they could in the past.

Nevertheless, you can withdraw funds from your workplace pension pot. As a lump sum of your entire pension, as an annuity or as income drawdown1 if you want to keep some money invested. Best of all, it doesn’t matter which option you go with; it’ll always be tax-free with your first 25% withdrawal. Currently, the minimum age to withdraw is 55, but this might become 57 in the year 2028.

2. Can I Access My State Pension At Any Time?

State Pensions are different than workplace pensions. You can’t access them before 65, even if you retire earlier. The State Pension age is 66; it will be 67 in the year 2028.

A prerequisite of any State Pension is to have a National Insurance record of a minimum of ten years. This will become 35 if you want your full State Pension2. If you want to know whether or not you qualify for your State Pension, go to

3. Will It Be Benefit Me To Retire Early?

Retiring early has its pros: a slower pace, more time for hobbies, and seeing your friends and family more regularly. If you’re a grandparent, your grandkids will be visiting more of you as well! Travelling to your dream destinations is more possible. You might even pick up a new hobby or go on a memorable adventure.

When you take your pension early, there are some cash rewards. If you choose to take your lump sum first (which will be tax-free), you can buy or do whatever you want to. You could either pay off a mortgage, renovate your house or assist your children.

Some people have found that their health and wellbeing has improved after retirement. This is due to decreased stress and pressure from external factors like traffic or angry bosses. Retirement does accommodate a more relaxed pace. Some even choose to become more active.

4. What Should I Consider About Early Retirement?

In the end, your quality of life is essential and should be significantly considered. Especially when it comes to taking your pension early, withdrawing funds from your pension pot early has its perks, but always think about the long-term effects on your life.

Science confirmed that humans live longer than they did years ago. So that’s a marvellous thing!. 65-year-olds can expect to live 22.8 years longer, a study in 2017 found. On the flip side, your pension will also need to live 22.8 years longer.

If you retire early, you might not have saved up sufficient money to last you longer. This means a smaller pension pot for your future. If you cash in most of your pension early,  you could face pension shortfall.

Pension tax is also an option if you want to get your pension drawdown2. For example, you’ll pay income tax every time you cash in (if it’s after your initial withdrawal of 25%). It all depends on how much you withdraw and how often. Drawdown tax can have a significant effect on your pension pot.

Planning is key. You’ll need a few years to plan for your retirement, and there are steps you’ll need to follow. In some people’s case, gradual retirement (retiring in phases) is a good compromise. Then you can decrease your work gradually and steadily, but get paid for longer. Your pension pot will also grow more in this instance.

5. Is It A Good Idea To Take My Pension Early?

Before you leave your career behind, you must know the size of your savings. There is a pension calculator which works out your pension income for you, as well as your annual retirement pay-outs.


Retiring at 55, with your desired income of £25,000 per year, as well as your age and savings can be put into the pension calculator. You’ll be told how much to save every month from reaching your pension income goal. Sometimes, the level of pension payments you’ll need to make it a bit too much for you, put in higher retirement age. You can play with different amounts and ages to see what you need to reach your goal.

It’s all a matter of timing. If you want to know if early retirement is an option for you, then you’ll need to start investing in your pension earlier too. Locate old workplace pensions which might give you an indication of your pension pot size. PensionBee can help you locate your pensions to combine consolidate them into one plan.

Putting Your Pension In PensionBee’s Hands

Drawdown2 has never been more comfortable with PensionBee. We combine and transfer your old pensions into one plan. This can be accessed and managed online. Then, BlackRock, State Street Global Advisors, HSBC and Legal & General will manage your funds for you.

Online, you can view your funds’ performance. At 55, you can access them. Just ensure that your bank details are in order. After about 7-10 working days, you’ll gain access to your pension funds.

Common Questions

Can I Take My Workplace Pension Early?
How Much Does A Pension Reduce If Taken Early?
Should I Take My Pension Lump Sum Early?
What Else Should I Know About Retiring?


Now you should be all set on your pension and all the necessary information. Taking your pension early and retiring earlier than the age of 66 has its pros and cons. So, make sure to know everything and are ready for any snares regarding this.

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