We’ve talked about reclaiming lost assets at Moneymagpie before and lots of people get separated from money that is rightfully theirs. Finding assets is easier than you might think, and with Experian’s new assets search you can be reunited with your cash in no time.
Darren Beach from Experian explains all: “A few years ago I returned to the UK after living abroad for a while. I kept my bank account open since I wasn’t sure whether or not I might go back. I didn’t, and I now don’t have any cards or paperwork for the account.
“While there wasn’t much money left in there (just a few pounds) it will remain in the account and is, in theory, an unclaimed asset.
“Now, imagine if all of us had an account like that which had lay dormant for whatever reason – that’s a heck of a lot of money lying around without anyone claiming it.”
Sure enough, figures from Experian suggest that while the total value of unclaimed financial assets in the UK has not been accurately defined, it is estimated to be approximately £15-20 billion. In fact a sum of around £400 million lies unclaimed in various bank and building society accounts.
And it isn’t just forgotten bank accounts – an asset can be separated from its owner for many reasons, from something as simple as a change of address, to illegal activity or the death of a partner. It could also be when people make investments and fail to tell their partners.
There is actually £31 million floating around in around half a million unclaimed premium bond prizes, and a whopping £400 million worth from life assurance and pension schemes that has never been paid out.
The total amount of unclaimed money estimated in NS&I (National Savings and Investments) products is as much as £1 billion.
Search for assets and claim your money
Hopefully what these impressively large figures will tell you is that there’s a good chance that you have at least some unclaimed money somewhere, and it’s definitely worth a search for assets to find out for sure.
Experian’s Unclaimed Assets Register (UAR), which launched last year, is a fully integrated website enabling consumers and other users to locate lost or forgotten assets, re-establish contact with your financial institution and reclaim money due. It could also safeguard your families’ assets following death.
Jo Buxton, Insurance General Manager at Experian, told us: “There is approximately £20 billion worth of unclaimed financial assets lodged with UK companies. Improvements to the UAR have made it a faster, more intelligent and user friendly service, enabling these lost assets to be reunited with their rightful owners.
Don’t forget to check your credit report!
One of the first ways to check your finances are in order is to check your credit report. This lists your credit accounts, from cards and loans to your mortgage.
It will show you where the money’s going, and importantly flag up any unusual financial behaviour or unfamiliar accounts which you can check up on.
It’s also a good way to keep track of how you’re coping with your finances, and see whether there are any accounts that you don’t need any more, and can go.
You can see your Experian credit score and credit report for free with a 30-day trial of CreditExpert (for new customers only).