Need pension advice


Registered User
Age: 35
Spouse’s/Partner's age: 35

Annual gross income from employment or profession: 35,000
Annual gross income of spouse: 65,000

Monthly take-home pay €5850

Type of employment: Civil Servant & Paye

In general are you:
(a) spending more than you earn, or
(b) saving?

Rough estimate of value of home 340,000
Amount outstanding on your mortgage: 250,000
What interest rate are you paying? 3.7% - switching to 2.6%

Other borrowings – car loans/personal loans etc

Do you pay off your full credit card balance each month? N/A
If not, what is the balance on your credit card?

Savings and investments: 14,000 saved

Do you have a pension scheme? Yes basic civil service pension but partner has none

Do you own any investment or other property? No

Ages of children: 12 & 10

Life insurance: Yes on home and a seperate policy

What specific question do you have or what issues are of concern to you?

The pensions - I'm concerned that we're clueless in this area. My partner has no pension at all yet. How much should they be paying in? If the company doesn't offer one where do we start?
We also need to get health insurance as have none. We were wiped out with the recession and childcare costs when the children were young. We are just really starting to save regularly in the last year and want to ensure we have cover for what's needed.
Also, is there any benefit in combining our taxes as a married couple? As we are both over the threshold we have continued to pay separately.
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Frequent Poster
You are on the right track- Staying away from consumer debt is the key to your financial well being and future wealth.
Regarding pension, you could choose an execution only PRSA with low fees. LAbrokers are brokers who offer a Zurich PRSA with a 1% management fee per year and 100% allocation. Out of this 1% annual management charge, LABrokers are paid a commission of 0.25% by Zurich

Don't pay more that 1% for execution only.

I follow Dave Ramsey's baby steps - It works as long as you do this in order.

  • Baby Step 1 – €1,000 to start an Emergency Fund
  • Baby Step 2 – Pay off all debt using the Debt Snowball
  • Baby Step 3 – 3 months of expenses in savings.
  • Baby Step 4 – Invest 15% of household income into retirement
  • Baby Step 5 – College funding for children if applicable
  • Baby Step 6 – Pay off home early
  • Baby Step 7 – Build wealth
Steps 4,5 & 6 can be done at the same time.


Frequent Poster
Your spouse should start paying into a pension asap and get things moving. No point in telling you to put €1,000 a month in if you can't afford it but you should put in as much as you can, leaving cash for disposable income and holiday savings etc. You'll get used to the money not being there.

The two of you should sit down and look at what level of income you will have at retirement and when that date will be. If you are not happy with what you see, you will have to adjust your outgoings now to fix your lifestyle in the future. If you start small, make sure you increase contributions every year, otherwise you'll get to retirement with a fund of €20k, which is no good to anyone.



Registered User
Thanks. Yes we need to get the pension started alright! We are saving a good bit each month at the moment so should be able to put some towards a pension. I'll have a look at Zurich, thanks.

Would being jointly assessed for tax be of any benefit to us on our incomes?