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Expats living in Hong Kong are advised to carefully consider the finer details of their pension. Many people fall victim to their own underestimations when it comes to securing a good pension, which can cause enormous difficulties in financial planning as retirement approaches. Expats working in Hong Kong should ensure they are on track to meet their pension objectives.
For most people, pension planning is an onerous chore which is often the reason for delay and procrastination. However, people should be aware that if they start saving for retirement early, it will be far easier to provide for a comfortable life after stopping work.
One of the reasons many people delay saving is because they simply don’t know where to start. Therefore, we have produced this step-by-step checklist of issues to make the task a little easier. If any expats in Hong Kong would like further assistance, Infinity is happy to offer a free consultation to look at the issues and individual personal situations in more depth.
When do you want to retire?
For many, the age of retirement is like the finish line of a race. Traditionally, many countries have chosen the age of 65 as the official retirement age. However, many people opt for early retirement while others continue to work much longer (Warren Buffet is still at his desk aged 82). Ultimately, the time to finish working life is down to personal choice and the availability of employment opportunities, but when starting the planning process it is a good idea to have an age in mind.
How much do you need to retire?
There is no single answer to this question; each individual has different spending patterns and these will change throughout the course of their life. For example, a couple in their 30s with two children will have vastly different spending priorities 30 years later when their children are financially independent.
What kind of lifestyle do you want?
Lifestyle choices after retirement will have a big impact on how much people need to put aside. Someone who intends to spend their time living and performing voluntary work in a small community will have a very different spending profile to a person wishing to spend six months a year jet-setting around the world. Our advice to people is to be realistic about what kind of lifestyle they would like to lead after finishing work.
How will inflation affect your retirement savings?
Consideration of inflation is vital for healthy retirement planning. As an example, in 1970 the average cost a loaf of bread in the US was 25 cents; today it is over $3. Inflation causes the price of goods to rise alarmingly. So putting retirement savings into a low return savings plan may mean they do not keep up with inflation and there is a decrease in relative value of the capital over time.
What affect will tax have on your savings?
The interest on savings can be subject to tax and this can have a detrimental effect on retirement savings. Expats in Hong Kong have access to international savings plans which have a far lower tax burden.
We hope this post will help you clarify some of the issues that should be considered and reviewed regularly. Hong Kong expats wanting assistance should get in touch for a free consultation with a professional adviser.
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