Pension providers 'restrict' withdrawals

22 January 2008 / by None
Several pension providers are placing restrictions on withdrawals from property funds amid the commercial property slump.

The slowdown in the market could mean that thousands of savers will face problems with their retirement plans as they struggle to get access to their money, report the Times.

Scottish Equitable is the latest provider to implement restrictions, announcing that investors must give 12 months' notice if they wish to withdraw their money.

There are now fears that people with pensions invested in the property funds could see a substantial drop in their value before they can access their money, continues the report.

Richard Sheppard, head of pensions at AWD Chase de Vere, an independent adviser, told the newspaper: "Some people with exposure to commercial property will be very worried about the state of the sector. We would advise anyone retiring now to draw on other assets in the pension first."

An attempt to curb withdrawals has seen numerous providers reduce the value of their investors' holdings by five per cent.

AEGON UK has stated that, while the UK property market has suffered recently, it believes the property market "remains an important strategic asset class".

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