Pensionfriend: The clever way to invest in Germany and retire anywhere in Europe

Pensionfriend: The clever way to invest in Germany and retire anywhere in Europe


If you're an expat working in Germany then you've probably wondered when and where you will retire? And what is the best way to prepare for retirement? If these questions have crossed your mind, then you've come to the right place.

In this article, we'll explain how you can use Pensionfriend to start comfortably investing in ETFs (exchange-traded index funds that track a specific stock index) in a clever and tax-efficient way, so that you can retire anywhere in Europe, sooner than you may expect! 

Start investing with Pensionfriend with as little as 50 euros per month

Taking the complexity out of the German pension system

The German pension system is quite complex. But here it is in a nutshell: just like the public healthcare system, the public pension system in Germany is a great foundation. But if you only have a state pension when you retire, you’ll only have a little under a third of your pre-retirement income. 

So how to fill the gap?

Pensionfriend has been designed to do just that: an expat-friendly pension plan that offers a tax-efficient way to invest for a safe and secure financial future. You can pay in on a monthly basis and benefit from combining tax-free compounding and low-cost, outperforming ETFs, and because the rebalancing happens within a so-called tax wrapper (a kind of tax break you "wrap" around assets to minimise the taxes you pay on them) you don't pay capital gains tax!

Do other options exist? And what are you supposed to do? Which of the many retirement planning options is best for you and your personal situation? Let’s take a look at your other options. 

What to avoid when saving for retirement in Germany

A closer look at the three pillars of the German pension system and the options it contains (public, company and private pensions) reveals that the state-subsidised pension products aren’t always the best choice. 

Pensionfriend's pension experts have subjected these products to close examination and concluded: The popular Riester and Rürup pensions are not always the most attractive investment options. And the popular company pension is not always suitable for everyone. The main disadvantages are always similar: 

  • High acquisition fees and ongoing costs
  • Poor investment of your contributions
  • Guarantees that sound like a great thing, but in fact crush the return on your investments
  • Supposed advantages of government subsidies and tax benefits lead to considerable disadvantages in the payout phase
  • Inflexibility when it comes to drawing your pension, if you move abroad

And even with the countless private pension insurances on offer, it is important to take a close look to avoid the biggest mistakes you can make with German pensions.

The Pensionfriend Pension Plan: Your best retirement solution

After months of studying and analysing the German pension market, the experts at Pensionfriend have created a pension plan that offers the best possible combination of all available benefits. 

“It’s our mission to help people build a safe and sound financial future.” – Dr. Chris Mulder, CFO and co-founder of Pensionfriend

Unlike other providers, Pensionfriend doesn’t charge any upfront fees and the ongoing fees are among the lowest in the market. Based on your retirement goals and risk preferences, Pensionfriend’s fund selection algorithm recommends the best long-term performing portfolio at the lowest cost. 

It dynamically adapts based on your income, age, and portfolio performance. This way, your Pensionfriend Pension Plan will outperform even the benchmarks of the MSCI World and the S&P 500 by up to 2%. 

On top of that, you benefit from Pensionfriend's tax wrapper: If you hold your pension plan for more than 10 years and withdraw it as a lump sum after your 62nd birthday, only half of the return on your investments is subject to taxation. Because the rebalancing happens within the tax wrapper you don't pay capital gains tax!

The Pensionfriend Pension Plan is highly flexible, so you can start with as little as 50 euros per month and adjust it to your situation at any time.

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Early retirement and financial security: Start investing in your future today

The path to a financially secure future is easy: Start by calculating when you can retire: Pensionfriend will estimate how much you will receive in your state pension, and how much you can supplement your retirement income with a Pensionfriend Pension Plan. 

You will receive your own pension dashboard, where you will also get an initial offer for your personal Pension Plan. In this dashboard, you can review and customise your initial plan at any time, or finalise it when you’re ready.

Want to learn more about the German pension system and how to make the best of it? Then sign up for Pensionfriend’s free webinar, during which you will get tonnes of free advice that can save you a tonne of money and help you get a better grip on your financial future in Germany.



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