One in three non-retired Britons think they’ll never be able to afford to give up work

Eir NolsoeData Journalist
September 15, 2021, 10:14 AM UTC

Three in five Britons who have not yet retired are also not confident they will have saved up enough to cover the cost of care for themselves in old age

Many Britons don’t think they will be able to retire and are not confident that they could cover their elderly care costs, a new YouGov survey shows.

A third of the public who have not retired (36%) don’t think they’ll ever be able to afford to retire completely. Those in the C2DE demographic group – many of whom do manual work – are much more likely than those in the ABC1 social group – who tend to hold managerial or administrative positions – to believe they won’t have enough money to give up work later in life (45% to 31%).

Only two in five (41%) non-retired people believe they either already can or will afford to give up work. Among this group, the median age at which they think they will have enough to retire on is 65. While this is the same age as those in ABC1 positions, it rises to 67 among those in the C2DE social grade.

Many people are not confident they’ll be able to cover living or care costs in old age

The government is facing increasing pressure to reform social care and devote enough funding to ensure elderly people’s savings are not depleted by care costs. YouGov’s research suggests that three in five (61%) say they’re ‘not confident’ they will have saved up enough to cover their own care costs in old age, while one in five are uncertain (20%). Only a fifth (20%) are confident that they could cover them.

People in the C2DE social group are less confident than those in the ABC1 category to think they’ll be able to afford care costs (70% versus 55%).

YouGov’s research also asked about how non-retired people feel about being able to cover the cost of living later in life. Britons are split on this, with 45% being confident they will have enough to cover the cost of living while 43% are not confident. Another 11% remain unsure.

Moreover, half (52%) of those who are not yet retired are not convinced they will be able to live comfortably in old age while only a third (36%) feel confident they will. A further 12% are uncertain.

See the full results here