SSAS Pension or SIPP?

Although SSAS and SIPP pensions share several similarities, they differ when it comes to their structure and who they will benefit the most.

What is a SSAS Pension?

A SSAS is an occupational pension scheme, usually set up by company directors. In most cases, directors want more control over investment decisions relating to their pensions — even more so if they plan to use the pension to invest in their business. In setting up a SSAS, each member becomes a trustee, which is a requirement under the Pensions Act 1995. The key features of a SSAS are as follows:

    • It is an occupational pension scheme

    • Members are usually directors or employees of the sponsoring employer

    • Every member has a notional share of the funds, including non-insured assets, such as property and Open Ended Investment Companies (OEIC), and insured assets, like Trustee Investment Plans

    • There is a limit of 12 members.

What Is a SIPP?

A SIPP is a personal pension plan, which is usually set up by an insurance company or a SIPP specialist. In this case, a member has greater control over the investments, but, unlike with a SSAS, doesn’t have to be a trustee. Anyone can take out a SIPP, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria, which, due to the higher costs involved in running a SIPP, is usually based on a minimum fund size. Additional features of a SIPP include:

  • A SIPP is a personal pension plan

  • There is the option to invest in non-insured assets, such as property and OEICs, as well as insured assets, like a trustee investment plan

  • The employer of a SIPP member can contribute to their pension plan and may operate payroll deduction on their behalf.

SSAS Pension or SIPP?

So which pension scheme is the best? Well, that depends entirely on who the members are and how much involvement they want in running the scheme. Personal preference comes into play as much as anything else, as well as the objectives you have in mind.

A SSAS is appropriate for you if…

  • Your individual or combined pension fund exceeds £75,000

  • You want to pool your pension fund alongside your spouse, family members or business partner

  • You’d like the option to lend money from your pension back to your company

  • You want to manage your pension fund with a more entrepreneurial approach in mind

  • You would like to purchase commercial property

  • You are looking for professional pension advice

  • You want more flexibility and control when dealing with pension investments

  • You would like to have flexibility in terms of drawing benefits when you’re retired

  • Alternative sources of income are available at retirement.

A SIPP is appropriate for you if…

  • Your pension fund is more than £75,000

  • You are seeking bespoke financial advice

  • You are willing to pay a higher level of charges (a SIPP tends to be more expensive than a “standard” pension)

  • You want more control over your pension investments in the stock market

  • You want flexibility in drawing benefits when you’re retired

  • Alternative sources of income are available at retirement.

What our customers say...

  • Simon and Teresa have helped me to gain control of my pension and now I am able to invest it in property through a fund with high fixed returns. I will also be able to use it on my own purchases / projects, which gives me much more cash access... Read more

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    Martin Littleboy
  • positive review We had a number of workplace and final salary pensions, dotted all over the place and decided to pull them all into one SSAS. Laura and the team were excellent in explaining what to expect and keeping us advised every step of the way, in fact as part of... Read more

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    Rosemary Wooding
  • positive review Mike Holt and his team have been awesome getting my SSAS set up. All ready to go in record time and looking forward to building the pension pot, tax-free!

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    Jeroen Hoppe
  • positive review Really professional company.
    I’ve pointed a few clients their way that want to release ‘dead’ money from their pensions to invest in higher returns.
    Gareth really knows his stuff and Teresa is super efficient.

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    Nick Carlile
  • positive review Genuine professional people delivering top notch quality customer service accompanied with the all important experience and in-depth knowledge of this business field.
    Many thanks in particular to Gareth and Teresa for their unswerving support advice and guidance over these past few years since I took up the challenge of looking after...
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    Nick Clement Avatar
    Nick Clement

The Landlord’s Pension is an expert in this niche sector of financial planning and have been helping clients to invest in property since 2004