Retirement resources

Karen Rowlingson (University of Bath)
Stephen McKay (Personal Finance Research Centre, University of Bristol)

Quality in Ageing and Older Adults

ISSN: 1471-7794

Publication date: 1 December 2005


There is currently a major debate about the future of pension provision in Britain. Much of that debate concerns levels and sources of income. But there is also growing interest in the role that assets and bequests might play in raising people's living standards in later life. Based on a major new survey of attitudes to inheritance and assets, this article argues that assets will not fill the pensions gap for those on the lowest incomes as these groups are least likely to have assets and among those that do, there is more support for the concept of preserving assets for inheritance than among more affluent groups. Bequests will also fail to help those most in need of a windfall as receipt of inheritances currently benefits the most affluent groups. However, among those with assets, there does seem to be more interest in liquidating assets, including housing assets, than previous research has suggested. Some people, therefore, are prepared to liquidate their assets in later life to supplement their income.



Rowlingson, K. and McKay, S. (2005), "Retirement resources", Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, Vol. 6 No. 4, pp. 12-23.

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