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I've always known DH is a tightwad but...

(66 Posts)
AnnieLobeseder Fri 21-Aug-09 23:30:31

...I've found out this evening that he has no pension! shock shock

My DH is incredibly tight, whenever I suggest we buy anything he say we can't afford it. He's had the same clothes for the whole 10 years I've known him, never wants to go out - he just hates spending money on anything. I try to be careful with money but also feel that life is for living and don't think an occasional indulgence is a bad thing.

When we go overdrawn and I ask him to help me budget, he just mutters about cutting up my debit card. Not sure how he thinks I'll do the food shopping!

Mostly I just let it wash over me, cos his attitude does tend to reign me in when I get caried away and start to think about spending too much on stuff we don't need - we balance each other IYSWIM.

But I never ever thought he would let his tightwad attitude jeopardise our future. He's always tight cos he's careful, and wants us to save, get out of debt etc, which is a good attitude to have. So why the fuck has he not taken a pension option at work!?!?! He says we can't afford a pension. But we save spend money on all kinds of things that aren't essential, like Sky, gym membership, and still manage to break more or less even each month. If I'd had any idea that he wasn't paying into a pension because we didn't have the money, I'd have found a way to budget it in!

He like to play martyr on all kinds of levels, and make out that things are worse than they are. But I'm absolutely flattened by his thinking that he can play martyr with our futures. He's the main breadwinner, it's his pension we'll be living on when we're old. If he doesn't want a company pension, which I've heard can be dodgy, fair enough, but he should have organised something!

I've tried talking to him and he just says we can't afford it and having enough to eat in the present is more important than the future. But we're not frikkin' starving! We might have to budget a bit more but we can afford to plan for our future!

It's more the fact that he didn't even tell me. It never occurred to me for a minute that a man who is usually the poster boy for responsibility could be so totally irresponsible and selfish, while painting it as being selfless to the family cause. I've never been so angry with him, and don't know how to sort this out. He just keep shrugging and saying 'we can't afford it' when I try to rationally explain why we need a retirement plan. I'm a very short fuse away from losing my temper and screaming at him.

He's 36, btw, and I'm 35, with both of us not even starting out careers until our early 30's so we're kinda short of time to secure our future as it is, not early 20-somethings with loads of time!

How can he not get it!?!

pinkyp Fri 21-Aug-09 23:50:09


shonaspurtle Fri 21-Aug-09 23:54:34

Did his father die young or has he any reason to expect to have a shorter life expectancy which might make it difficult (albeit selfishly) for him to think about the future?

Otherwise, does he have any comprehension of how poor he (and you) is going to be in old age??

Do you have anything you can start to put aside for yourself?

My dh also doesn't have a pension <bangs head against the wall repeatedly and resolves to revisit this> however I have a very good one and if dh thinks he's getting any pocket money from me in his twilight years he can go whistle.

MrsFlittersnoop Fri 21-Aug-09 23:55:47

You'll have to organise this for him. Ignore HIS priorities and sort this out for yourself. Cancel Sky and his gym membership, shop around and find the best deal. It really isn't too late to sort this out! smile

So sorry to hear you are in this situation. Join the club. DH is 43 and I am 48. He has no pension, savings or life insurance. Evert peny I've earned since out wedding has gone on paying household bills and his debts. We can't afford the rent on our house in London any more. We are moving in with my mother next week because after 6 years of marriage because he's never got his shit together to organise a mortgage. His biggest client hasn't paid us for 7 months and owes us £20K.

TiggerIsEisCat Sat 22-Aug-09 00:02:20

you know something??i could have written that postshock!!! replace the pension with life insurance and we have a match!!

he is so tight he literally squeaks when he walkshmm i have had many an argument with my DH about this as i feel it is important for us to make sure we are both adequately covered if one of us should have something happen tous. i said i dont want him to be left with nothing if i were to die and vice versa. we have a DD and i am thinking more about this since she came along as if my DH is left with nowt so is she!!

he seems to think we have all the time in the world but he is forgetting that the worst can happe at any time and is own GF had a heart attack from stress and overwork at age 29 (he lived but was signed off work as medically unfit!!)

i really dont think it is unreasonable to cover ourselves for the futurehmm he, however, doeshmm its always 'we'll see how money is in a fw months' etc

edam Sat 22-Aug-09 00:06:00

Find out how much the widow's pension is atm - no idea but am sure it is a pittance. Then ask him if he's SURE he could manage on that, were the worst to happen. Or SURE that you could bring up ds/dd on that.

edam Sat 22-Aug-09 00:08:00

(That's more about life insurance than pensions, though.)

Prof Sir Michael Marmot is doing some research on pensions - has established that the state pension currently pays only 2/3 of what would be required to live a healthy life - eat a decent diet, be able to get out of the house and take some exercise and maintain friendships.

So yes, your dh DOES need a pension.

MrsFlittersnoop Sat 22-Aug-09 00:59:50

On a practical note, please get him to join his company pension plan, and make sure you and the DCs are included the scheme. You then need to organise a top-up stand-alone pension.

I could be quite of of date, but I believe you can invest up to 15% of your nett salary in pension schemes (work and private pension combined )without any tax liability.

skihorse Sat 22-Aug-09 08:07:43

Slow down a minute.

i) it's not HIS job to provide for YOUR future - you want cash? Get off your GFA and earn some. angry

ii) Do you know anything bout pensions and/or ponzi schemes? Seriously - do you know anything about the current state of group pensions? shock Do some bloody research and then thank your lucky stars that your husband has actually pulled a blinder!

Honestly. angry

Anniegetyourgun Sat 22-Aug-09 08:47:35

Ooh ooh ooh Skihorse, I think you may be unpopular. I won't even start, as your confrontational language suggests you're looking for a fight rather than a rational argument.

ABetaDad Sat 22-Aug-09 08:48:38

Annie - the truth is if you have no other cash savings and going nto overdraft occassionally you are better off saving the money and having no pension.

I work in financial markets for a living and pensions have and will continue to be the biggest financial disaster facing many people for years.

In my view, if your budget is tight you should do the following.

1. Cancel the Sky, Gym etc and pay off all debts and have a cash sum equal to 6 months salary (for rainy day money in case of redundancy) saved in National Savngs.

2. Get a good Term Life Insurance policy that only pays out on death and has no investment element to it.

3.If you have any surplus after that drip feed regular amounts into a low cost FTSE 100 Tracker fund in an ISA/PEP.

Unless you can access a rock solid civil servce or public sector pension scheme just forget private penson schemes. Waste of money, poor performance and high fees. However, public sector pensions are now under threat so nothing is safe.

edam Sat 22-Aug-09 08:52:07

Interesting ABetaDad. I'm very suspicious of the financial services industry after scandal after scandal about 'mis-selling' i.e. rip-offs.

But given the state pension only provides 2/3 of the amount needed to live a healthy life, what is one to do? A FTSE 100 Tracker Fund is not going to provide a big enough pot to last people 20 or 30 years after they retire, is it? (Unless you are Fred Goodwin.)

edam Sat 22-Aug-09 08:53:01

Btw, I speak as someone sold an endowment mortgage when I was 21, with promises that it would not only pay off the mortgage but give us a nest egg. Ho ho bloody ho, it won't even do the first.

warthog Sat 22-Aug-09 08:53:11

you don't have to invest in a pension for your pension iyswim. you need to buy investments though, that will give you good return. have you asked him about his investments?

failing which, i do think it's a good idea to get a job and you can put what's left of your earnings after childcare towards your pension.

but ime pension funds don't yield great returns. i wouldn't trust them personally!

theyoungvisiter Sat 22-Aug-09 08:59:35

Annie, what sector does your DH work in? Does his company offer a scheme? If so, can he get information on its current financial state and the provisions it offers? They are supposed to send out an annual statement detailing the current projected shortfall and what their plans are to rectify it.

BTW I disagree that public sector pensions are "under threat" - they are just changing from final salary to contributions based in the main. They are still excellent value for money with hefty employer contributions.

MaggieBeauLeo Sat 22-Aug-09 09:04:48

Skihorse, do you think he's going to pay for childcare for two if you won't pay for a pension!?!?!?

skidoodle Sat 22-Aug-09 09:07:29

Paying Sky subscription fees while refusing to plan financially for retirement is not being tight, it's being profligate.

Whining on about being able to eat in the present is ridiculous if eating includes watching cable television.

MaggieBeauLeo Sat 22-Aug-09 09:23:02

This reminds me of my x. he wanted it every way. he saved on things i would have liked and spent on the things he 'needed'. I had wants and he had needs. He didn't see it though. And he was insistant that I should be at home with the kids too!! He put a tiny amount of money into my account every month £150 and by the time I'd paid my mobile phone bill and bank charges that was about £110. That had to last me a month. If I complained, he said, 'you have children's allowance don't you?!".

I oftenhad to use 'my' money for things for the children though, because he used to pore over the visa bill and interrogate me at the end of the month. It was such a nightmare. I could buy nothing without being questioned as to whether I could have got it cheaper in another shop!

Even though he gave out if I spent to much money on food though, he would also open the fridge door and complain that there was nothing to eat.

at the memory

MaggieBeauLeo Sat 22-Aug-09 09:24:55

that wasn't supposed to be a link, sorry.

ABetaDad Sat 22-Aug-09 09:28:57

edam - you are right about fnancial services and the unvability of pensions as a retirement funding option. Unfortunatley the pretence that we are all going to be able to live for 30 years after retiring on 2/3 salary when we have only put 5% of our salaries into a scheme for 40 years of our working lives is mathematically bound to fail.

We are all going to have to get used to working for most of our lives just as people used to. In the old days (30 - 40 years ago) most people who had a pension drew it for just a few years after retirement until they died. That is the only reason it worked. Now we live for far too long for the old pension model to work.

AnnieLobeseder Sat 22-Aug-09 10:08:29

Thanks for the input folks. I know what needs to be done, I'm just crushed that he hasn't sorted it! He had opted out of his company pension! shock

I have a small stand-alone pension, and will be going back to work soon and have my own pension. But since I'm currently a SAHM, then yes, it is his responsibility to secure our future, btw skihorse.

I have no idea what has prompted him to do something so out of character. He's usually the most sensible, responsible person in the world!

It just really galls me that he leaves me in charge of all the family finances, but the one thing I expected him to do, and let's face it, all he had to do was tick the 'yes please' box when we signed his work contract, he hasn't done! I never for a second even considered that he would have opted out! What sane person would do that?!

More than anything it's really shaken up how I see him. He's not entirely the person I thought he was, and it seems his constant grumblings and martyrdom aren't a benign as I thought.

AnnieLobeseder Sat 22-Aug-09 10:18:11

And to add to the joy, DH is now not speaking to me because I'm so angry with him!

expatinscotland Sat 22-Aug-09 10:22:56

I couldn't agree more, ABetaDad!

Retirement as most people now see it - people sure do have short memories! - is a social anomaly that will be enjoyed by our parents' generation.

And that's it.

Their own parents worked until only a few years before they died, and so will we.

AnnieLobeseder Sat 22-Aug-09 10:26:33

ABetaDad - thanks for the advice. Are civil service pensions better than others then? Cos I work for the civil service.

When DH and I are on speaking terms again I will discuss the various savings options with him.


ShinyPinkShoes Sat 22-Aug-09 10:33:27

I get why you are concerned but I DON'T get why you are so angry with him.

I know loads of people of the same age as me (I am 35) who don't have pensions. I actually do because I work for a local authority hence I am included in the LGPS

Yes discuss it and plan something with him but what's the point in getting angry?

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