5 Oct 2012

Wide scope for review into retirement income

8:09 am on 5 October 2012

The latest review into retirement income will look for the first time at trends in KiwiSaver savings.

Every three years, the retirement commissioner examines retirement income policies and practices to assess effectiveness.

Diana Crossan says the review could help develop policy to better meet the needs of people over 65.

She says the intergenerational impacts of retirement income policy is a focus this time because the baby boomers are starting to retire.

Ms Crossan said the review is also focusing on KiwiSaver because the scheme has been going long to assess trends.

Womens' future retirement income prospects will also be examined.

Ms Crossan says a particular area of interest is the impact of changes on home ownership in New Zealand, the projected home ownership for New Zealanders and what that will mean for New Zealanders in retirement.

"At the moment we have high home ownership, 79% I think, of New Zealanders over 65 own their own home and another almost 10% will own their own home, they have a mortgage so they're just paying off the last parts of the mortgage."

Ms Crossan said that leaves just under 10% of people over 65 who will not own their own home.

But she said the rate of home ownership for 30 and 40-year-olds has changed hugely and in the future there may be a much larger group of people at retirement age who do not own their own homes.

Ms Crossan said research will be gathered until April and the review will be presented to the Government later next year.