Pension planning does not have to be complicated. Ultimately, it is enough to concentrate on answering a few questions. Those who can answer the following five questions for themselves have already taken the most important steps in their pension work

What should I save monthly?

Roughly speaking: Employees should save about 20 percent of their net salary, self-employed 20 percent of their gross salary on the side. However, this is really only a rough guideline. If you really want to save in a targeted way, you have to determine for yourself what income you want to have available after taxes and health insurance in old age. The preparation of a revenue – expenditure balance is meaningful here.

On the income side there are possibly the legal supply, already existing fortune, real estates and all other assets, which one can convert in the age to income. On the expenditure side one must consider which expenditures expect one in the age.

Do you live for rent or in your own home? The additional costs for the accommodation result in both cases. The costs for the health insurance are important, especially with private health insurance, the contribution increases with time. What monthly amount do I need to cover my living expenses, including holidays and leisure time?

If you decide how much you want to save, you should also consider taxes and inflation. Many people underestimate inflation in particular. As a rule of thumb, money loses around 2 percent in value every year. This loss should be taken into account when saving.

The aim of this question is: What income do I need in old age?

Which state-subsidised old-age provision makes sense?

A state-subsidised old-age provision always has two sides. With subsidised contracts, you save taxes and possibly social security contributions until you retire. However, the receipt then comes in old age: these contracts are then often taxed retroactively with state subsidies. This can nevertheless often be worthwhile because the tax burden in old age is often lower than during working life.

The various pension stories are called, for example, Rürup, Riester, company pension schemes or private pensions and are all in some way protected from taxation. A correct comparison is only possible if, on the one hand, one knows which form of provision is suitable for one. A Rürup is worthwhile itself usually rather for higher earners.

The Riester pension, for example, only exists if you pay into the statutory pension insurance or if you are a civil servant. Occupational pension provision must be calculated individually on the personal situation. On the other hand one should know also approximately, how high the tax load will be today and how high it probably in the pension time.

The aim of this question is: what kind of support am I looking for?

How do I structure the savings process?

How would you like to deposit your money: as regularly as possible or as you like? The sooner you are prepared to commit to regular savings, the sooner you will reach your retirement savings target. Insurance solutions thus force you to be disciplined when making payments, which is one of the central secrets of wealth accumulation.

For Rürup pensions, additional payments are an option. The Riester pension and most company pension plans, on the other hand, are capped at a maximum payment amount. For many, a flexible investment is very important, especially when making payments. Securities savings plans are best suited for this, here the heights and payment modalities can be designed completely freely.

The aim of this question: can I commit myself to a fixed savings amount?

How flexible should my pension plan be?

Actually, you do not need a flexible payout during the savings period. But what does it look like if the life situation suddenly changes drastically? An illness leads to a premature rejection of one’s money?

Not all forms of provision allow a flexible payment in such a case. Nothing at all can be paid out of the Rürup pension during the term, only if the subsidy is repaid. The same applies to the Riester, unless you invest the money in a property.

State subsidies therefore have their price above all when you need a flexible payout in between. However it has also which good, if one does not come so simply to the savings. It facilitates savings discipline and protects the assets. Therefore one should take out existential risks with special insurances.

The aim of this question is: How high should the “availability rate” of the money be?

What risk appetite do I have?

German investors in particular are very afraid of investment risks. This can be seen from the fact that the equity ratio in Germany is much lower than, for example, in the USA. With the right investment strategy, the risk of equities can be well controlled. It is important to know your own risk tolerance.

The following considerations will help you to assess your own tolerance for the investment risk: How much interim loss in value can one endure without leaving the strategy at the end? Do you get scared at minus 10 percent and change the whole portfolio? Or would you even hold out at a minus of 30 percent and even reinvest cheaply instead?

Answering the question of investment risk before investment planning is ultimately decisive for success. After all, anyone who gets scared in the meantime and simply rearranges the portfolio is more likely to lose money than those who sit out the weak phase of the stocks and wait for rising prices.

Pension for the self-employed

The compulsory pension will come – what you can do now

Compulsory pension: This is the current situation

In the coalition agreement, the grand coalition plans to introduce a compulsory pension for the self-employed. The reason: Many entrepreneurs do not provide enough for old age. In the coalition contract (here as pdf publicly observable, S.92) it says: ?We want to introduce a age precaution obligation for all independent ones?

So a lot of money is at stake. In the past the speech was already there that it should be at least 400 euro per month – for independent ones under 30 years (source: manager magazine). Who is older, must reach accordingly deeper into the bag.

This pension for independent ones is to be insolvenzsicher and seizing-safe . So if you have a house or a stock portfolio, that won’t help you. Because a house or the shares are taken from you, if you are broke.

The result: you must either pay into the statutory pension insurance or make private provision by “Rürup”. With Rürup, you pay an amount per month which you will only get back when you retire.

In addition, you must pay at least enough to have enough money available to you in retirement above the “basic pension level”.

But so far it’s only political plans! It can still change at any time. Therefore, please keep up to date.

As a general rule, it always makes sense to sit down with an insurance broker or a fee consultant and determine your individual pension gap. This text is a simple introduction.