Adrian Walker
AUTHOR Adrian Walker| CREATED 04 Jun 2015
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The Active Adventurer

Brynda Lewis didn’t have a plan upon reaching retirement age, but has since become an experienced scuba-diver. We outline the key things to consider if staying active and seeking adventure are priorities for you during Life2.

Being an Active Adventurer during retirement means refusing to put your feet up. It’s about using your new-found freedom to pursue physical activities that you didn’t have time for during your working life. And it’s an increasingly common choice. We’re remaining healthier for longer, and the number of clubs and adventure holidays tailored to those aged 55 or over is growing fast.

Brynda Lewis’s story is particularly inspirational because, as she admits in our video, she ‘didn’t do any adventure sports at all’ before she retired. She was a keen swimmer, and this was one of the key reasons she chose to throw herself into scuba-diving. Initially, she was ‘very, very scared’ of getting into the water in her gear. But she’s since completed 180 dives, many of them in the Red Sea.

She’s built a rich Life2 partly because of her determination, and partly because she’s managed her finances carefully. Like many people, she didn’t have a plan about what to do during her retirement until after she reached retirement age. But with the help of a financial adviser, and by supplementing her pension income with a small business selling vintage homeware online, she’s been able to cover both her everyday expenses and her underwater adventures.

What to consider if this Life2 looks right for you

The UK’s new pension rules will give you the freedom to access your pension pot as you choose, and could give you the flexibility you need to seize opportunities for adventure while making sure you don’t run out money too quickly.

You could, for example, use an initial cash lump sum to pay for equipment or training, buy yourself a guaranteed income for life in order to cover your everyday expenses and potentially take further lump sumsto travel on impulse.

You’ll need to be careful though – the new flexibility on offer makes you responsible for making your income last. Remember: your retirement could last 30 years or more, and while you’re active now, you’ll need to think about how you’ll manage if you need help with everyday activities later on.

So consider speaking to a financial adviser, especially if you don’t yet have a clear plan in mind for your retirement. They can review any pension schemes you have, plus any other potential sources of income. They can take the time to fully understand your circumstances, needs and goals. And they can then help you decide which strategy to choose. All while making sure you don’t pay any more tax than necessary.

If you don’t yet have a financial adviser but are interested in finding one, you can do so using the free search tool here.

Adrian Walker

Retirement Planning Manager Old Mutual Wealth

Adrian has worked within the Skandia and Old Mutual Wealth organisations for over 25 years. He has had several roles covering the technical aspects of pension savings and identifying opportunities for customers and their advisers. That includes financial planning for people already with pension savings and those considering using a pension scheme to build savings for later life. Adrian is well known in the financial industry for his expertise and is a regular press spokesperson for Old Mutual Wealth, working with both the press to highlight issues arising from the continuing changes to the pension landscape, particularly with regard to longer term retirement income needs of consumers.