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How-to Guides » Start a pension

We all need to consider how we're going to pay for our lifestyle in retirement. Follow these simple tips for how to get started.

Make sure you get the maximum State Pension

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The Basic State Pension is the first level of income you get from the Government when you retire. For the financial year 2013-14, it stands at a maximum of £110.15 per week for a single person, or £220.30 per week for a married couple.

However, in order to qualify for the full State Pension you need to have been paying National Insurance for a certain number of years. For men born after 1945 and women born after 1950, that means 30 years of National Insurance contributions.

If you have missing years (perhaps to raise a family, or go travelling) then you won’t qualify for the full State Pension. However, you can top up your National Insurance contributions so that you get the full entitlement.

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