Home > House and Home > Start Tracking Down Old Investments and Savings

Start Tracking Down Old Investments and Savings

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 8 Apr 2011 | comments*Discuss
 
Retirement Changing Jobs Lost

On average most people change their jobs at least five times before they reach retirement age. The more job changes a person has before retirement the more likely they are to have old pensions and investments that can be tracked down.

Changing Jobs before Retirement and Lost Investments

Changing jobs five times before retirement is an average number; but many people changes jobs more than 15 times. Job hopping before retirement is now standard and a great number of people will change jobs every two to three years. Constantly changing jobs is one of the reasons why people lose track of their pensions. It is estimated that there are around three billion pounds of unclaimed pensions in the UK. Tracking down these pensions is not a hard task and does not require a large fee.

Tracking down Old and Lost Pensions

Anyone who thinks they may have old pensions from various companies should start their hunt with the Pension Tracing Service. This tracing service is part of the government’s Pensions Service and is completely free of charge. The Pension Tracing Service has access to 200,000 pension schemes via its database and details can be completed online. The database holds details on company pensions and personal pensions supplied through banks and other pension providers. It is important to supply as much information as possible to conduct a thorough search.

Tracking Down Old Savings Accounts

Throughout their lives many people change and open new bank accounts without closing down their previous accounts. Although the banks will try and contact customers these unclaimed accounts are often left dormant. My Lost Account is a free to use online savings tracking service run by the British Banker’s and Building Societies Association. This service can access 43 banks and 48 building societies in the UK. Details can be completed online and the entire process should be completed in around 12 weeks.

Other Lost Investments

There are a few other investments that can be traced using online services. These can include old investment trust funds and even insurance policies. The Investment Management Association, The Association of Investment Companies and the Unclaimed Assets Register can all be used to track down these investments. Again these tracing services can search online databases and contact companies if a search proves positive. Not all of these companies are free to use and there may be a fee to conduct a search.

Searching for a Spouse’s Assets

It may be the case that a spouse has died without leaving any details of their assets. It is possible for a spouse to search for a deceased husband or wife’s assets; this is also applicable for children. If the search does turn out to be positive then their will be checks undertaken to verify identity and proof of eligibility to any funds. This will also be the case for searches made on personal assets. Banks, building societies and investment companies will all require proof that the person claiming is entitled to the funds.

Points to Remember When Searching

Searching for old investments and savings is usually quite straightforward. Points to keep in mind when searching should include:

  • Bank sort codes and account number will be helpful but are not completely necessary
  • If interest has been accruing on old savings accounts then this can also be claimed
  • Remember that accounts may have been opened in a maiden name or a previous address
  • Just because companies have closed down or been taken over does not mean that the policy or investment does not still exist
  • Tracing companies update their databases regularly and it may be worth rechecking at a later date
  • Try and remember old employers; an old CV may be helpful in jogging the memory
  • The more information that can be supplied on the online applications forms the more thorough a search can be
  • Free to use search companies should be used before considering fee paying tracing services

It may seem like a long shot but it is a fact that there are billions of pounds of unclaimed assets in the UK. With the free to search tracing services available the applicant really does have nothing to lose. Remember, you do not have to wait until retirement to begin searching for old investments and savings. But old investments and savings could prove to be a windfall and can help to top up finances during retirement.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Gemma
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Age is nothing but a number! If you are over 50 or know someone who is & are interested in a paid stock photo modelling opportunity…
    18 July 2018
  • Paula
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Hi I am looking for local clubs for my dad in Liverpool he is 77 and recently widowed in November he is feeling a bit lonely and…
    15 July 2018
  • Lindyloo
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Divorced active lady looking to make friends in Sutton Coldfield area to share fun or educational times with. Interested in many…
    10 July 2018
  • Lindyloo
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Late 60s widow full of life would love to meet male or females for outings,
    10 July 2018
  • Joandee
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Walking, joining a group would also be good. How do people contact each other on this site Please?
    5 July 2018
  • Joandee
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    I am an active 75 year old widow, live in Sutton Coldfield area, enjoy theatre, history, travelling, would like to meet someone…
    5 July 2018
  • Tricia
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    I am looking for for a social club in the Greenock area for over 60s for lunch quizzes and just good company. Male and female
    30 June 2018
  • RetirementExpert
    Re: Travel Concessions for Over 60s
    Jim - Your Question:I have Freedom Pass- I wish to go to Brighton- lowest cost- what details please-travelling from West…
    27 June 2018
  • Sue
    Re: Clubs to Join in Retirement
    Hi I am looking for volunteers to fundraise in West Yorkshire if anyone is interested you can email me greens@bhf.org.uk. We have…
    26 June 2018
  • Jim
    Re: Travel Concessions for Over 60s
    I have Freedom Pass- I wish to go to Brighton- lowest cost- what details please-travelling from West London- weekday or…
    26 June 2018