Where does retirement income come from?

As you approach this exciting next stage of your life, you may have questions about where you’ll get your retirement income.

If you’re contributing to a group retirement or savings plan, you’ll want to become familiar with how other sources of income will balance your retirement income picture.

Think of retirement income as a three-legged stool – government pensions, company plans, and personal savings and investments.

1. Government pensions

Government pensions like CPP or QPP are intended to replace roughly 25 per cent of your earnings, but only up to a certain limit, and only if you’ve contributed for about 40 years. How much you get will depend on how much you earned during your working life and how long you’ve contributed. 

The amount of old age security (OAS) you receive will depend on your income in retirement and the length of time you’ve lived in Canada. The majority of Canadians qualify for this pension.

Keep in mind you must apply for all government pensions.  To get an idea of how much CPP and OAS pension you can expect to receive, call Service Canada at 1-800-277-9914 or visit their website. For QPP benefits, contact the Régie des rentes du Québec at 1-800-463-5185 or their website.

Source: www.servicecanada.gc.ca

2. Company retirement and savings plans  

If you have a company group retirement or savings plan, it may be a significant part of your retirement income. But it won’t be all you need.

You’ll want to review your company plan so you know ahead of time if you should save more or revisit your investment strategy. Resources like the Plan your retirement tool are available to Great-West Life group plan members by signing in to GRS Access.

3. Personal savings

Your personal savings could make the difference between surviving your retirement years and living your retirement dreams. When planning your future, take your personal savings into consideration. These could include your bank accounts, real estate or registered and non-registered individual savings plans.