State Pension  

Savers still fail to check state benefits despite warnings

Savers still fail to check state benefits despite warnings

The number of savers over the age of 65 who are failing to check whether they are entitled to state benefits has only fallen by four percentage points.

Despite industry warnings, research from Hub Financial Solutions published today (March 16), found 48 per cent of those over 65 have never checked whether they are entitled to state benefits in addition to their state pension.

This compared to 52 per cent the year before, according to the research by Just Group's financial advice arm.

Out of the 1,004 over-65s surveyed, a quarter of savers had last checked their eligibility more than a year ago.

Simon Gray, managing director of Hub Financial Solutions, said: “Year on year we find that the take up of key pensioner benefits is lower than it should be.

“We know many will be struggling on low incomes yet on average pensioner homeowners who are missing out on benefits are losing out on £1,614 each year. That money could make a significant difference to their quality of life in retirement.”

The research found renters were far more likely to have checked their eligibility with three in 10 (29 per cent) reviewing their situation within the past 12 months. 

Only 14 per cent of those renting their home said they had never checked their state benefit entitlement.

Nearly a third (29 per cent) of homeowners stated they thought the value of their home meant they would not qualify for additional support, while 70 per cent said their level of income would probably disqualify them from receiving extra benefits.

Mr Gray said it was important these misconceptions were forgotten as many could still be entitled to receive benefits despite owning their own home.

He said: “Benefits are in place to help people in all sorts of situations, whether they are having to care for a spouse or other relative, suffering from an illness or disability of their own, or entitled to a reduction in their council tax. 

“Many people are missing out on benefits they are entitled to receive and that extra
income could make a big difference.”

According to Hub Financial Solutions, 54 per cent of renters claimed state benefits, five times the amount of homeowners, where just 11 per cent received extra financial support.

amy.austin@ft.com

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