Interactive Investor

Levelling up healthy life expectancy depends on income and housing boosts

2nd February 2022 10:49

Rebecca O'Connor from interactive investor

interactive investor comments on government White Paper.

In response to the publication of the government’s White Paper on levelling up, which includes outlines of initiatives to increase healthy life expectancy, housebuilding, the quality of private rented accommodation and income disparities across UK regions, Becky O’Connor, Head of Pensions and Savings, interactive investor, said: “The government is right to focus on healthy life expectancy as one of its key metrics for the levelling up agenda. The age at which people are likely to experience ill health that could make it difficult for them to work, is well below the state pension entitlement age, which makes the 60s a vulnerable time of life for people who can’t afford to retire but can’t work either. However, health isn’t something you can fix overnight; positive changes now could take decades to become apparent in a rise in healthy life expectancy in deprived areas.

Good health, as we have seen through the pandemic, is vital for work and well-being. Poor health too often derails financial security in later life, forcing people to leave work earlier than planned and potentially use up private pension savings early. This can have knock-on effects on their quality of life in later years, leading to a vicious circle of lower living standards, worry and more health problems.

“Health is vital for financial well-being and vice versa. Our Great British Retirement Survey found that ill health derailed retirement plans for 24% of people. Improving financial security through income levelling up and quality of life through housing provision improvements are all part of how to improve health. Having a decent income was cited as important for general health by 88% of respondents in our research.”

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