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Pension woes

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by Darthteacher, Apr 16, 2019.

  1. Darthteacher

    Darthteacher New commenter

    I've been teaching abroad from several years now. When working abroad do any of you pay into a British Pension scheme or maybe into a savings scheme? If you do, which one do you recommend? Thanks for any advice on this topic.
  2. 576

    576 Established commenter

    I was lucky that my first 2 overseas jobs had pension schemes.
    My 3rd does not so I am implementing the 50/30/20 budget and investing 30%of my wages.

    I would recommend reading Millionaire Expat by Andrew Hallam.
    I also pay my Ni conts. I'm 24 years from retirement and may get nothing back by then so I tell myself it's ok because my conts paid for my Grab and my parents' pension. It'll be a bonus if I personally benefit.
  3. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    You can continue paying £3600 gross into a pension scheme in the UK for - I think - the first five years of living abroad, but after that you need to work something else out. A lot of teachers I know seem to use property, others self invest, while others just spend it all....
  4. T0nyGT

    T0nyGT Lead commenter

    I also pay NI. Apparently I'll get the equivalent (taking in to consideration inflation) of £850 a month.

    I'll believe it when I see it. Obviously this isn't my only pension
  5. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Hmm. Pensions for international teachers: this one is a bit of a headache. It used to be the case that you could continue paying into your TPS for five years, after you had left the UK. Unfortunately you cannot do that any more. Perhaps you could buy back some years, if you were to return to teaching in the UK, but of course then you would be paying the employer's contribution as well as the employee's. Ouch!

    Mr and Mrs Hippopotamus put some cash into investments, only to see them lose nearly half of their value. Six years later, we are still waiting to see if they will recover their original value! Therefore I can understand why lots of teachers want to invest in property. When and where might be the big questions. Alas, it is not always the case that property always goes up in value, as some friends who bought in Spain discovered to their cost. When I was a single hippo and letting out my old flat in Salisbury, there was one unpleasant altercation. between my tenant's present boyfriend and her ex The police were called, after hundreds of pounds of damage had been done to my apartment.
  6. nemo.

    nemo. Occasional commenter

    Pension is just a tax wrapper. Just invest 25% of your salary (min, upto 40% best) into tracker funds. Split between UK, USA, Far East, Europe and Emerging Markets.

    Pay off any debts.

    Tax advice might be needed.

    Or live fast, drink party and die young!
  7. mermy

    mermy Occasional commenter

    Now that's what I call a plan!
  8. frogusmaximus

    frogusmaximus Occasional commenter

    Ok, as i mentioned on another thread, I have some past experience in the UK pensions sector, though that knowledge is fats becoming obsolete no doubt.

    You may well feel so well off living and working overseas but it can be a false economy unless you plan ahead. First, a few things for you to consider. Do you put aside money for the future as you are forced to do when contributing to a pension in the UK? Do you intend returning to the UK in future?

    If you earn well and are interested, get some advice and your money invested in a 'dodgy' (joking) high interest paying offshore account. Alternatively buy a home or two somewhere and plan to rent one out in future or have tenants pay off your mortgage whilst overseas. You have control and it is more flexible than a pension.

    If you fear that sort of idea or you haven't quite got that sort of money (so many are of course paying of loans now), pay into the UK state pension. A few thousand quid can buy you additional years. I think I paid out for about 4 years worth and almost have a full pension entitlement now. I live in the third world and won't return to the UK when i retire. That UK pension, despite being paid at 67, will no doubt go a long way, and if you plan to retire in the UK, it's pretty essential you have something. Alternatively set up a personal pension, under whatever guise they are known as now. Talk to a financial advisor or two the next time you are back home.
    the hippo and blueskydreaming like this.
  9. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    As frogusmaximus says, one of the most important decisions you need to make, Darthteacher, is whether or not you are going to retire in the UK or overseas. This old hippo's pension from the TPS will not go far in the UK, but in Bulgaria it should be more than enough. Could I also raise the unpleasant subeject of Council Tax? I know that OAPs get a bit of relief on their Council Tax, but how much are we talking about? 10% off? 50%? Or does it vary, depending on where you are living?
  10. TeacherMan2019

    TeacherMan2019 New commenter

    I highly recommend the book Expat Millionaire by my friend Andrew Hallam. Very smart dude who taught in Singapore for years. Create your own pension and live independent of a particular government!

    @the hippo if you don't mind me asking, what in the world were you investing in that did so badly in 2013 (6 years ago)? We need to chat my friend. PM me and I'll trade some personal finance banter for some excellent stories on Bulgaria and Shenzen!
  11. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    If you really want to know, TeacherMan2019, I invested quite a big pile of cash in oil-based companies in the Far East. As has been said before, "It seemed like a good idea at the time." First we had a collapse in oil prices and then there was Trump's trade war with China.

    As for China and BG, TeacherMan2019, you can read more stories than any sensible person could possibly want to read by going to my blog bulgariawithnoodles.blogspot.com There you can find many a tall tale about my misadventures in the Middle Kingdom and in Bulgaria too.

    I have long suspected that the TES Moderators all have shares in the company that publish Andrew Hallam's book.
  12. TeacherMan2019

    TeacherMan2019 New commenter

    Ah... that would be how. It's just that the overall markets around the world were doing so well at that time, I was thinking that maybe it might have been gold. Turns out it was "black gold" instead.

    I've known of Mr. Hallam since he was just another Canadian teacher that was occasionally writing personal finance articles in Canada. I continue to use his first book "The Millionaire Teacher" in my personal finance class to this day. If anyone should have been in on the IPO for that fella's work it's this guy. Thanks for the conversation invite - we'll chat soon!
    Helen-Back likes this.

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