Millions of Britons have forgotten savings and pensions
More than seven million people have lost track of investments and savings accounts, while around £1.4 billion is stranded in small pension pots.
According to research commissioned by National Savings & Investments (NS&I) 7.6 million Britons have lost track of savings.
Twenty-eight per cent have lost their account details while 27 per cent have opened several accounts and forgotten about some of them over time.
Some have lost their account details following a house move, or know they have childhood accounts but do not have the full details.
Sixty per cent of those who believe they have lost track of savings accounts have tried to recover their money, with 72 per cent of them being successful.
NS&I, in association with The British Bankers’ Association and the Building Societies Association, offers a free ‘MyLostAccount’ service to help savers track down their accounts.
NS&I has helped customers to trace £450 million of savings through the service.
John Prout, Retail Customer Director at NS&I said: “Even small amounts of money can help with the costs of day to day living, so it’s important people keep a track of their savings no matter how much they’ve previously put away.”
Many people have also lost track of their pension funds, according to the Pensions Advisory Service, which estimates that £1.4 billion is waiting to be claimed.
The funds are in accounts worth less than £5,000 which workers have left behind when they move jobs.
It can be difficult for workers to track down these smaller funds when they reach retirement age and some workers may assume that the fund has been lost due to the company closing down or being taken over.
The number of small pension pots is expected to soar after auto-enrolment starts in October.
This will require all employers to enrol their workers into a qualifying workplace scheme.
It is estimated that there will be 4.7 million additional small pension pots by 2050.
The government’s Pension Tracing Service will search for a lost pension pot free of charge and details are available on the DirectGov website.