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Top financial tips for a midlife career change.

Kevin Mountford, co-founder of savings platform Raisin UK shares his advice on how to navigate the job market in mid-life and make all-important financial preparations for the second half of your life.

By: Martin Thomas

It has been reported widely that the economic impact of C19 pandemic and associated lockdowns has had a significant impact on employments levels, so you might be surprised to learn that employment among the over 50s is actually on the rise. According to ONS data, unemployment among 50-64 year olds rose by 4.1% between October and December 2020.  Many people in their 50s have used the opportunity (or threat to their livelihoods) to change careers or start their own businesses.

Kevin Mountford, co-founder of savings platform Raisin UK shares his advice on how to navigate the job market in mid-life and make all-important financial preparations for the second (we would say better) half of your life.

Pension preparation

It’s never too early to start thinking about retirement planning, but if you’re already into your fifties, hopefully you’ll have started to make provisions already. However, if not – don’t panic. There are ways you can commit to preparing for your retirement. Set out your financial goals and up your pension contributions. Your 50s are a great time to do this, as hopefully you’ll be at the peak of your earning potential and may have paid off larger financial obligations, especially your mortgage. Consider your immediate needs – if you are over 55 some pension providers allow you to cash in up to 25% tax free. If the pandemic and a redundancy has put you in a sticky situation, this is an option to consider, but remember that the more you take now, the less you have to last in later life. If your pension pot isn’t looking as healthy as you’d like; consider some lifestyle changes – for instance, downsizing your home or releasing equity could be a way to make your retirement more comfortable.

What to do if you face a career change later in life

Nobody wants to be forced to make a career change, especially at the end of your working life. Firstly, consider whether changing roles is a necessity or a choice. If necessary, take stock of what you want your next role to be. You will have decades of experience to offer any employer and this should be at the forefront of how you sell yourself into a prospective employer.

Additionally, changing careers late in your working life can provide freedom to move into something you may have been interested in pursuing earlier – but didn’t have the financial stability to do so. If you’re in the position to have fewer financial obligations, this could be the time to pursue that passion project without chasing a pay packet.