Over six million retired people could be losing out by as much as £1,058 a year – because they haven’t checked their eligibility for financial support in retirement.
According to the DWP, at least half of the 13 million people entitled to benefits aren’t claiming them.
Most of those not making claims are homeowners – assuming that because they own their own home they won’t be entitled to support.
“Our fear is that homeowners on low incomes are missing out because they assume they are not eligible or do not know how to check if they are,” explained Simon Gray of HUB Financial Solutions.
“Official figures show that more than £3billion of pensioner benefits go unclaimed each year by more than a million households. The question is why so many people are not checking their eligibility and potentially missing out on some of the billions we know is going unclaimed.” he added.
“ONS figures show that retired households with the lowest incomes receive the lowest benefits income and nearly nine out of 10 of this group are owner occupiers.”
“Renters are more likely to search online, contact government departments or councils, or organisations such as Citizens Advice or Age UK. In contrast, homeowners were nearly twice as likely to say they were not sure or didn’t know how to check.”
Age UK estimates that as much as £3.5 billion worth of support goes unclaimed by older people each year.
Says Mr Gray: “Statistics prove that the take up of key pensioner benefits is far lower than it should be, with people missing out on more than £100 a week income in some cases, which could make a massive difference to their lives.
“It raises concerns about whether the system is too complicated or if the guidance and information available is easy enough to access for those who need it most.”
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