Pensions -v- Property : Some Simple Comparisons For The Common Sense Investor

Pensions -v- Property : Some Simple Comparisons For The Common Sense Investor

Analysis, Background

Read any pension investment prospectus and you’ll most likely be presented with a whole raft of complex arguments as to why you should put your money into a pension scheme. But at the end of the day the requirements of most investors are very simple – pension scheme or no pension scheme they’re looking for a place where their money will grow and be safe for the future.

So, for common sense investors looking for good returns and a safe haven for their money, let’s take in a few simple comparisons between property and a pension scheme:

1.What are you putting your money into?

Pensions: Paper instruments
Property: Bricks and mortar, and land

2.Can you borrow to invest in it and hence benefit from leverage?

Pensions: No
Property: Yes

3.Is it a tangible investment? Can you see it, touch it, occupy it?

Pensions: No
Property: Yes

4.Is it an asset?

Pensions: No
Property: Yes

5.How transparent is the investment process – can you see what is being done with your money?

Pensions: Not very
Property: Very

6.How long do you need to hold it before a return is likely?

Pensions: Minimum 20 years
Property: Minimum 10 years

7.Who pays the ongoing running/management costs?

Pensions: You do
Property: Your tenant does

8. Can you cash in your investment if things change and you want your money back?

Pensions: Difficult/impossible, at least until age 55
Property: Very easy, at any time

9.Does it have a track record of good performance over the decades?

Pensions: Hmm not really
Property: Very

10.How likely is it the Government will meddle, and change the rules to your disadvantage?

Pensions: Possibly
Property: Possibly …. but see Question 8

11.Being pessimistic now. If the worst comes to the worst and the economy collapses what will you have to show for your money?

Pensions: Zilch
Property: Real land and property you can still sell, rent or use.

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