The UK’s retired population is struggling to survive on their pension income, according to a recent survey by Age UK.
The charity for older people found that one in five of those aged over 60 owed money on a mortgage, a credit card or a loan. A further 11% of those surveyed need to borrow credit in orderly meet mortgage repayments or rent.
Of those who owe money, one fifth is concerned about their ability to tackle their mounting debts.
The squeeze on pensioners’ budgets has been attributed to a number of factors, including a low return on savings, and the rising cost of living. The government’s quantitative easing measures are also said to have damaged annuity rates.
According to Age UK, 1.8 million pensioners are currently living in poverty. The charity also revealed that pensioners are missing out on £5.5 billion in benefits, which go unclaimed each year. To further add to retirees’ money woes, 1.6 million pensioners fail to take up their Pension Credit entitlement.
Michelle Mitchell, charity director general at Age UK, has said that the situation facing pensioners is extremely concerning.
“It is extremely worrying that such a high number of older people report having debts and have had to borrow money just to keep a roof over their heads. Most older people live on relatively small incomes so making debt repayments can be a worry,” she said.
“Far too many older people are living in poverty and the Government must continue to work proactively on ways of getting money to older people who are in desperate need.”