Standard Life pension review

Standard Life offers personal pensions, SIPPs and workplace pensions. Find out how to invest in one.

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Standard Life
Standard Life is a well known pensions provider in the UK. When deciding to put a little aside into a private or personal pension, this might be one of the providers you consider. But what features does it have and how does it work?

What is Standard Life?

Standard Life is a pensions and investments provider in the UK. It provides both personal pensions, self invested personal pensions and workplace pensions. It also has a range of different options available for when you want to take money from your pension at retirement. Standard life speaks in plain English with these options, instead of using fancy language and jargon that you usually see.

How does Standard Life work?

Like other pension providers, Standard Life begins by asking what it is you’re looking for, helping you get straight to what you need.
The options are:

  • I want to understand the basics
  • I want to get a standard life pension
  • I’m saving for my retirement
  • I’m planning when and how to take my money
  • I’m retiring soon and need advice on my income options

Standard Life personal pension

Standard Life’s personal pension, which it calls the “Active Money Person Pension” (AMPP) lets you choose between “easy” and “DIY” investment options, depending on how hands on you want to be with your investments.

What is a personal pension?

A personal pension is a pension that you manage yourself, separately to a workplace pension. It’s basically a savings account that you get access to once you turn 55, but the money is invested to help it grow. Because the money is invested, there’s a chance that the value of your investments will go down.

When you turn 55, you can start to withdraw your pension pot. How much you get depends on how much you saved over the years, how well your investments performed, any charges that apply to your account and how you choose to draw down your pension.

Features of the Standard Life personal pension include:

  • Flexible payment options. Choose to pay in £80 per month or £800 as a lump sum.
  • Manage your plan online. Start, stop, or change your payments whenever you like.
  • Choose between Easy and DIY. Decide how much help you want with your investments
  • Consolidate your pensions. You can transfer your current pensions over to Standard Life and keep them all in one plan.

Self invested personal pension (SIPP)

Self invested personal pensions are a type of personal pension, but they offer a larger choice of investments. You’d generally choose a SIPP if you are an experienced investor and know how to manage your portfolio.

Features of the Standard Life SIPP include:

  • More options. You get access to a larger number of investment options
  • Flexible payment options. As with its personal pension, you can pay in £80 per month or £800 each year.
  • Manage your plan online. Start, stop, or change your payments whenever you like.

Pros and cons of Standard Life

Pros

  • Has a personal pension and a SIPP available
  • Lets you choose how hands on you want to be

Cons

  • High fees compared with other providers

Compare pension providers

Table: sorted by promoted deals first
Data updated regularly
Name Product Minimum investment Choose from Annual fee Brand description
Interactive Investor Pension
Any lump sum or £25 a month
Over 3,000 funds
£10/month
interactive investor is a flat-fee platform, which makes it cost effective for larger portfolios. Capital at risk.
Moneyfarm Pension
£1,500 (initial investment)
7 funds
0.35%-0.75%
Moneyfarm has pensions that are matched against your risk appetite, goals and planned retirement date. Capital at risk.
AJ Bell Pension
£1,000
Over 2,000 funds
0.05-0.25%
AJ Bell has two different pension options, a self managed pension and one that is managed for you. Capital at risk.
PensionBee Pension
No minimum
7 funds
0.5% - 0.95%
Pension Bee is a newbie in the pension market. It helps consolidate your pension plans into one place. Capital at risk.
Hargreaves Lansdown Pension
£100 or £25 a month
2,500 funds
0-0.45%
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's biggest wealth manager. It's got three different retirement options. Capital at risk.
Saxo Markets Pension
Saxo Markets Pension
£10
Over 11,000 funds
No annual fee
Saxo Markets gives flexibility and control over your investment strategy. Capital at risk.
Penfold
Penfold
No minimum
4 portfolios
0.75-0.88%
Moneybox Pension
£1
3 funds
0.15% - 0.45% charged monthly
Manage your money with an easy-to-use Moneybox app. Capital at risk.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Data updated regularly
Name Product Price per trade Frequent trader rate Platform fees Brand description
Fineco
£2.95 on UK shares,
$/€3.95 on US and European shares
£2.95
£0
Your first 100 trades are free with Fineco, T&Cs apply.
Fineco Bank is good for share traders and investors looking for a complete platform and wide offer. The minimum deposit with Fineco is £0. Capital at risk.
eToro Free Stocks
0% commission, no markup, no ticket fee, no management fee
N/A
Withdrawal fee & GDP to USD deposit conversion
Capital at risk. 0% commission but other fees may apply. The minimum deposit with eToro is $1,000 (£710).
Hargreaves Lansdown Fund and Share Account
£11.95
£5.95
No fees
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's number one platform for private investors, with the depth of features you'd expect from an established platform. The minimum deposit with HL is £1. Capital at risk.
Degiro Share Dealing
£1.75 + 0.022% (max £5.00)
£1.75 + 0.022% (max £5.00)
Portfolio transfer fees (in & out)
Degiro is widely seen as one of the best low-cost share brokers, for people who are looking to trade regularly. The minimum deposit with Degiro is £0. Capital at risk.
Interactive Investor
From £7.99 on the Investor Service Plan
From £7.99 on the Investor Service Plan
No transfer fees or exit fees. £9.99 a month on the Investor Service Plan
Open an ISA, Trading Account or SIPP you will get £100 of free trades to buy or sell any investment (new customers only).
Interactive Investor offers everything most investors need. Its flat fees makes it pricey for small portfolios, but cheap for big ones. The minimum deposit with ii is £0. Capital at risk.
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Data updated regularly
Name Product Minimum deposit Maximum annual fee Price per trade Brand description
Interactive Investor stocks and shares ISA
Any lump sum or £25 a month
£119.88
£7.99
Interactive Investor offers everything most investors need. Its flat fees makes it pricey for small portfolios, but cheap for big ones. Capital at risk.
Moneyfarm stocks and shares ISA
£1500
0.75%
£0
Moneyfarm helps you meet your investment goals with fully-managed portfolios designed around you. Capital at risk.
Hargreaves Lansdown stocks and shares ISA
£100
0.45%
£11.95
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's biggest wealth manager. It's got everything you'll need, from beginners to experienced investors. Capital at risk.
Nutmeg stocks and shares ISA
£100
0.75%
£0
Nutmeg offers three types of portfolios. Choose the one that goes with your investment style. Capital at risk.
Saxo Markets stocks and shares ISA
No minimum deposit requirement
0.12%
£8.00
Saxo Markets offers a wide access to a range of stocks, ETFs and funds. Capital at risk.
AJ Bell stocks and shares ISA
£500
0.25%
£9.95
AJ Bell is a good all-rounder for people who to choose between shares, funds, ISAs and pensions. Capital at risk.
Fidelity stocks and shares ISA
£1000 or a regular savings plan from £50
0.35%
£10.00
Fidelity is another good all-rounder, offering a good package at a decent price. Not suited for trading shares. Capital at risk.
Legal & General stocks and shares ISA
Legal & General stocks and shares ISA
£100 or £20 a month
0.61%
N/A
Legal & General is a big financial services company which offers insurance, lifetime mortgage, pensions and stocks and shares ISAs. Capital at risk.
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All investing should be regarded as longer term. The value of your investments can go up and down, and you may get back less than you invest. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. If you’re not sure which investments are right for you, please seek out a financial adviser. Capital at risk.

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