Firstly, you are not going to achieve the pension plan value that you were aiming for – and will have less money in retirement as a result. Try to avoid stopping payments into your pension plan – it’s there for a reason, it does the job well, but only if you stick to the plan.
Secondly, by stopping paying into your pension plan, you negate (lose) the all-important guaranteed minimum future value. This means that the future value will be 100% dependent on the performance of the S&P500 Index – which is still a great investment choice which has unlimited upside, but obviously it’s not as good as having that same unlimited upside potential AND a protection against possible downside.
Apart from that, all the other terms and conditions of the pension plan stay the same – as long as you’ve already completed the initial period of your pension plan the amount you have already saved will stay invested and growing until the end of your chosen duration, it will still have some value in future, just not as much it would have if you stick to the plan.
When starting your pension plan, pick an amount that you can afford to stick to, and prioritise that monthly amount in the same way as you would with other expenses, such as somewhere to live and something to eat. In retirement, the financial circumstances – and therefore the lifestyle – of Future You is entirely dependent on the financial decisions and plans you make before that point in time comes. Create an awesome financial plan, and stick to it!