Join National Pension Tracing Day on Sunday 29th October
Ok, I admit it. It’s not the first thing that springs to mind.
There you are, on the last Sunday in October, remembering that, for the next six months, winter nights will become darker, earlier.
Which gives you an extra hour on said evening before being plunged into premature, chronologically-enforced gloom.
So what do you do on the night in question? Sigh and look for the remote? Top up your glass?
Or pull out long-forgotten paperwork from wherever you left it to start digging into what pensions you might have had?
Yes, that’s the premise of National Pension Tracing Day and, looking at it anew, I can see it’s not necessarily an easy sell but bear with me.
The truth is, pensions are usually way down on most people’s to-do list. Which is why we are delighted that we are now in year three of what’s become a national campaign because they need all the help they can get. And with NPTD, it’s self-help.
By pinning it to a particular day and time, it is yet another nudge to spread far and wide the message everyone in the industry has been transmitting for many years: you may have money tucked away you didn’t know about and it’s easier than you think to find.
Convincing people that this is the case is, frankly, the hard bit but we are getting there. A bit of digital digging can yield real results, as our latest success story shows.
Ceri Hatton, who lives in Bridgewater in Somerset, got in touch with our team to say he’d found six pensions he had overlooked. Now 61, he started work at 17 so had decades to look back on.
He discovered four himself and was contacted by pension companies trying to find him to reunite him with the other two. Altogether, the £8,000 they were worth helped him to move house.
It’s great when people share their experience with us and, from a pension professional’s point of view, recognise that the industry continues to go to considerable lengths to connect funds with their ultimate owner.
In Ceri’s words: “I found the whole experience very easy. Pension companies want you to have your money and I felt the whole journey was very positive. Everyone involved was very helpful. I’d recommend that anyone, especially those nearing retirement age who have been working all their lives, to check if they have lost a pension.”
He’s found six of the estimated 2.8 million pension pots thought to be overlooked and containing around £27 billion, averaging £9,500 each.
As the nights do draw in, wouldn’t discovering money you didn’t know you had with a mouse click or two make life a little brighter in the colder spell ahead?
I think I’ve managed to talk myself around. Give it a go on Sunday night – or any time. You may be pleasantly surprised.