One in four savers worry they won’t have enough money to retire on, new data from the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association shows.

The research, which canvassed people saving into workplace pensions, shows that there is considerable uncertainty over whether workers can put enough away amid issues such as the rising cost of living.

The current minimum contribution into a workplace pension is set at 8% – 5% from the employee’s earnings and 3% from the employer. This, many pensions experts argue, is a good start but ultimately inadequate when it comes to long-term saving for retirement.

But defining how much is ‘enough’ is tricky, because it is very dependent on individual circumstances.

Here are some of the key considerations to make.

How long do you plan to work?

Thinking about your working life is a key aspect here because your job is generally speaking going to be the number one way in which you accrue savings for retirement.

It is a very personal consideration, especially depending on what type of career you have. Professions such as trades (builders, plumbers, electricians, engineers) tend to be more physical and you may find your physical condition can’t keep up once you get older.

Likewise people who work a relatively comfortable desk job could conceivably keep going for longer. And with the increase in flexible and remote working, there’s less pressure to commute.

Another important consideration is how much you actually like working. Some people work until late in life simply because they love their job and find it rewarding enough to keep going. Others can’t wait for the day to hang up their boots and relax!

Alternatively, you might be considering decreasing your hours, but continuing to do some work to keep money coming in.

All that is to say, if you foresee circumstances in which you’ll want to retire sooner rather than later, then you need to make sure you’re contributing as much as you can as quickly as you can, to give your wealth time to grow in line with your goals.

Of course, you may be planning on working for longer, but this doesn’t mean you can just forget about pushing hard on the savings front.

What assets do you have?

Your asset mix will have a really important impact upon how much income you can earn in retirement.

It is very normal for people’s most valuable asset to be their home. But tying up all your wealth in property can become an issue once you’re looking to retire and generate an income.

Unless you’re willing to sell and downsize to generate cash, your house is a highly illiquid asset that isn’t easy to capitalise on.

The exception to this is if you have become a buy-to-let landlord and intend to use income from that in retirement. But of course, you’ll want to consider whether you want to be a landlord at all as you retire.

There is also a consideration for asset mix in investments as you approach retirement. Although there’s no hard and fast rule, broadly speaking as you close in on retirement age more of your wealth should move from faster-growing stocks to more stable bonds and other yield-paying investments such as income funds.

What do you see yourself doing in retirement?

This is again a very personal consideration. Many people are content to potter in the garden, nurture grandkids and play bowls at the local club.

But retirement is no longer a moment to necessarily have to slow down with your life! It is quite possible to take those trips of a lifetime, to buy the car you’ve dreamed of owning, or to buy that house by the beach.

The difference between the former and the latter is cost. Taking it easy is fairly cheap, seeing the world costs money! Both are laudable aims but how much you need to save to meet those goals is crucial to have in mind.

There is also another really important and often-overlooked consideration here. Spending in retirement tends to follow a U pattern. When you first retire you spend quite a lot (getting that new car), then as you settle down, it reduces.

But finally as you enter your latter years, your costs will start to increase again. This comes in the form of basic things like help in the garden, DIY around the house or other basic tasks. But it also comes down to a more serious consideration – care.

The sad truth is as we get old, we need more help from others to live our lives comfortably and with dignity. Care is one of the biggest underfunded social issues in the UK at the moment, so paying for it in later life must not be forgotten.

If you’d like to discuss your retirement planning and savings goals, or anything else raised in this article, don’t hesitate to get in touch.