Key points in brief

  • Saving for retirement early on is worthwhile for everyone, whether you’re a student or an apprentice.
  • Sabbatical or year abroad: never forget to pay the minimum AHV contribution during your stay abroad.
  • Students can also pay into pillar 3a and save tax.

Parents and grandparents often say how important it is to start saving for retirement early. Due to their job situation, apprentices start doing this earlier than students. But there is no need to panic – students can also invest in their retirement provision. Whether you start working early or spend longer studying, you should be familiar with the following facts.

You can’t go wrong with the AHV, can you?

Gainfully employed people already begin paying AHV contributions from the year in which they turn 18. Students and people who are not employed do so at the latest from the year of their 21st birthday. It doesn’t matter whether you already have an income or not. What is important is that you pay the contribution calculated for you to the AHV compensation office; otherwise you will miss out on contributions needed to receive a full pension when you retire. Don’t forget: you should also pay your AHV contribution during stays abroad.

I have a second job: do I have to pay into pillar 2?

In general, if you earn more than CHF 21,510 (as of 2022) per year in a job, you will be enrolled in a pension fund and will pay contributions. This rule applies per job. Important information for students: if you have several jobs but earn less than CHF 21,510 in each of them, you will not necessarily be enrolled in a pension fund. Of course pillar 2 is an important part of retirement planning, but do not worry.

How can I benefit from pillar 3?

It is very easy: as soon as you earn income that is subject to mandatory AHV contributions, you can pay into pillar 3a voluntarily. And you can deduct the amount paid in from your taxable income in your tax return. Great, isn’t it!? How much you can pay in depends on whether you are already enrolled in a pension fund. If you are, then the maximum you can deposit is CHF 7,056 per year (as of 2023). Gainfully employed students and apprentices who are not enrolled in a pension fund may pay in a maximum of 20% of their net income from employment.

I am still studying in my late twenties. Do I need to do anything about my retirement planning?

The earlier you start paying into your retirement planning scheme, the better. With pension funds, you can catch up on missing payments and increase your pension capital later on when you are employed by making pension fund purchases. So don’t worry if your education takes a little longer.

How much money will you have in retirement?

Three minutes well spent: answer a few questions about yourself and your professional future and we will tell you how much money you are likely to have when you retire.

Want to know more about retirement planning?

On our UBS Young Pension page, you will find everything you need to know about retirement planning: the important dos and don’ts, guidelines for smart small talk and advice for your future.

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