Martin Lewis urges Britons to check if they are missing out on £137,000

Martin Lewis has urged people to check if they are missing out on savings and a financial boost after a man recovered £137,000 in pension savings.

The founder of Money Saving Expert (MSE) shared several stories from people who successfully followed his tips, in MSE’s latest newsletter.

One follower, Richard, got in touch after he managed to track down his lost pensions after following one of Mr Lewis’ tips.

Richard said: “I followed the advice, and after a few months managed to located my old pension, which I stopped paying into during the early 1990s. I was shocked to find it had £137,000 in it.”

Mr Lewis said in the newsletter: “One of my joys is that huge numbers get in touch to report a success across a Himalayan range of issues. My frustration is not everyone tries.”

Figures from the Pension Policy Institute released last year showed there were £26.6billion in lost pension pots, which averages at £9,470 per person.

People can easily lose track of their pensions as they change jobs and join different schemes.

A person may be able to locate their lost pensions using the Government’s pension tracing service.

This is available on the Government website or can be done by calling the service on 0800 731 0193.

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A person can also try to track down their lost pensions using a private service, such as Gretel or ABI.

Mr Lewis also shared a success story of a person who secured a major boost to their state pension by voluntarily paying National Insurance (NI) contributions.

Graham wrote in to say how he topped up his contributions for five missing years for around £4,000. He will get an extra £1,300 in state pension payments each year as a result.

Mr Lewis said this means Graham will get an extra £26,000 in total payments if he lives to the average age.

A person typically needs 30 years of NI contributions to get the full basic state pension and 35 years of contributions to get the full new state pension.

Even topping up contributions for just a few years can make a huge difference over the course of someone’s lifetime.

State pension payments increased 10.1 percent in April, with the full basic state pension currently at £156.20 a week while the full new state pension is £203.85 a week.

People can usually top up contributions up to six years ago but this has currently been extended by another 10 years, as far back as 2006.

This will only last until the end of July, after which a person can only top up contributions as far back as the usual six years.

A person can find out how much state pension they are on track to receive using the state pension forecast tool on the Government website.

This will also show them if they have any gaps in their NI record and if they can pay voluntary contributions to cover them.

Martin Lewis is the Founder and Chair of To join the 13 million people who get his free Money Tips weekly email, go to

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