Pension reviews are usually completed once a year – on the commemoration of the policy your provider will send you a statement outlining how your pension is doing. This will describe the value of funds last year, the fund or funds you invest, each change in this fund, and the contribution (if any) that you have made up the previous 12 months.
Most pension reviews providers will also provide a forecast – a crystal ball analysis based on your current contributions being maintained or in the case of frozen benefits what the fund could be worth based on the invested amount. The growth rates used to present these forecasts can be wide of the mark so use the lowest figure to look at your future pension benefits.
A pension statement will describe the current transfer value and any penalty if you want to transfer to another provider, you must look close to this penalty if you are considering moving your retirement or you are advised to do so by a financial advisor.
The last important element of your statement is a guaranteed benefit – this will be a list and can include a guaranteed annuity in your normal retirement age or in some cases the opportunity to take more than 25% in tax-free cash. It could be allowed to take 100% of your retirement as free cash.