Lack of claims for vital means-tested benefits results in hundreds of thousands of Britons missing out on money due to them. This could be a make-or-break financial decision, especially for those on limited incomes later in life.
A new report from Just Group has uncovered the extent of those missing out on important benefits.
It found that of pensioner homeowners entitled to receive benefits, some six in 10 were failing to claim anything at all.
It means these households are missing out on an average of £1,100 a year in extra income.
A total of one in four were claiming support but receiving less than their full entitlement.
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Savings Pension Credit offers a top-up for older pensioners on a low income with modest savings.
It consistently has the lowest proportion eligible, according to Just Group, but also low take-up rates.
The organisation asked its eligible clients whether they were receiving the sum – and none were in 2022, missing out on £292 extra income per year.
The benefit with the highest eligibility was found to be council tax reduction, however, this also suffers from low take-up rates.
Only 35 percent of those eligible people asked by Just Group were claiming – missing out on an average £1,003 annually.
Finally, the organisation looked into Universal Credit, which is gradually replacing six older legacy benefits across the UK.
About one in seven of Just Group’s lifetime mortgage enquiries came from households below state pension age potentially eligible for Universal Credit.
Although actual eligibility rates were low, the take-up rate was just 50 percent, with £3,692 a year annual income being missed.
Mr Lowe has attributed the low take-up figures to a prevailing perception when it comes to benefits.
He added: “The reason our take-up figures are a little worse could be that homeowners struggling on low incomes may think the value of their home rules them out of state support.
“Our own research in 2021 found 44 percent of homeowners aged 65+ had never checked their entitlement to benefits compared to 16 percent of renters.”
Consequently, the expert has pointed Britons towards free, independent, third-party benefit calculators such as Turn2Us and entitledto.
These are likely to help Britons find out the kind of support they might be entitled to.