my least bad and least good financial decisions

This is part of the m-network’s day of posts on our best and worst financial decisions. Both my best and worst decisions are related to pensions.

best decision

I started pension (retirement) fund contributions as soon as I started work and I’ve consistently invested them in index funds.

Why is this my best decision?

  • Starting earlier is always better than starting later.
  • The company I work for contributes double whatever I contribute up to a certain limit.
  • Index funds match my keep it simple and average philosophy.
  • I now stand a fighting chance of not being desitute in my old age.
  • I’ve never had the money, so I don’t miss it.

worst decision

I invested my non-work related pension (retirement) funds in the Virgin Money Stakeholder Pension.

Why is this my worst decision?

  • They charge a 1% fee, whilst the best provider of index funds in a pension following the same index charges 0.3%
  • I don’t have enough money invested to transfer out of this fund
  • I didn’t shop around before investing, I was sold on the advertising
  • Its difficult to get a valuation from Virgin, for some reason their system won’t let me register for online access.

I know this isn’t a really bad decision. That’s because most of my financial errors, haven’t been decisions but simply forgetting things, like:

  • how close I am to my overdraft limit
  • when the due date is on the credit card
  • getting work expenses reimbursed
  • cancelling subscriptions I no longer need

Really, I’m lazy and I procrastinate. I’m not a great decider – most of my decisions are in the ok to good range, but my non-decisions are pretty terrible.