More SIPP advice needed, says Nationwide

30 September 2005
Mortgage intermediaries putting property into pensions have said that the government needs to give people more information on Self Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs).

Research by UCB Loans, Nationwide's specialist lender, shows that while almost half of the 1,236 mortgage intermediaries surveyed own buy-to-let properties, 98 per cent of them believe the government needs to give more information to people on SIPPs.

UCB Home Loans manager, Keith Astill, said: "The research indicates that brokers are way ahead of the rest of the population when it comes to owning buy-to-let properties, and of the benefits of putting them into SIPPs.

"SIPPs will be beneficial for a small proportion of the UK population, but it has to be remembered that people will not have the usual level of control over a buy-to-let property if they put it into their SIPP.

"Effectively speaking, if you put property into your pension, it’s there until you retire."

Of those surveyed, 68 per cent of brokers said that they would have no hesitation in recommending a SIPP to clients but over half believed that the benefits of sinking money into SIPPs has been oversold due to media hype.

Norwich Union announced this week that it is to hold urgent talks with the Financial Services Authority (FSA) about SIPPs.

The insurance company wants the FSA to take action to avoid SIPP crisis when pension rules change in April to allow pensioners to put their money into property.

After research, Norwich Union found that there are a number of risk factors involved in taking out SIPPs, including tax charges for investment in property abroad and losing control of your property.

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