More than a million lone pensioners are entirely dependent on the state pension
The official figure of 1.1 million means almost a quarter (24 per cent) of the 4.55 million single pensioners are living off the basic state pension of £122.30 per week – £6,360 per year.
Even with a basic pension credit top-up of £37.35 a week, this means the elderly are still forced to pennypinch on £8,301 annually.
Numbers have soared since 1995/6, with an increase of 26 per cent between 2011 and 2016 and 15 per cent in the 12 months to April 2016.
Malcolm McLean, senior consultant at insurance services group Barnett Waddingham, said: “All the available evidence suggests that millions of people in the UK are heading for an impoverished old age, or at best will fall well short of the level of income they need for full financial security and a degree of comfort in retirement.
“Relying on the state pension is a big mistake. The state pension is not enough to live on.”
And he warned: “Pensioner benefits such as free bus passes and winter fuel payments may not survive indefinitely.”
The basic state pension is £122.30 per week – £6,360 per year Incredible oldest workers in the world Wed, February 8, 2017
Whether they’re workaholics or simply serial socialites, you have to admire their tenacity.
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Syd Prior, 96. Syd retired from his meet and greet role at B&Q’s New Malden branch in South-West London days before his 97th birthday in 2011.
Stephen Lowe, of retirement specialists Just, said: “With increasing numbers entirely dependent on the state, we need to encourage people to save and plan for their retirements.
“Poor decisions can quickly erode savings and people will find themselves reliant on whatever the state can provide.
“Pension Wise, the Government’s impartial and free to use guidance service, is there to help people make good decisions about how to use their pension savings. But far too few people are making use of this service.”
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Pensioner benefits such as free bus passes may not survive indefinitely