Rumour has it that we all have a bit of money that is ‘lost’… there are several ways this may have happened to you, and frankly for the few minutes it would take to check – why don’t we all do it right now!
The most obvious place to start in right in our own homes, have you checked the back of the sofa, old money boxes, old purses and handbags, a suit pocket you wore last year etc. It’s quite amazing how much money there may be ‘lurking’ – you might decide to put it in the bank, or use it for an emergency fund or to pay the window cleaner. Whatever you do will be more useful than it gathering dust under the sofa… If you find a cheque more than 6 months old it may not be honoured, and even cash can become obsolete so you might want to do this regularly. We have large cat money boxes, one for coppers and one for silver coins we might find lying around, we tend to empty them about once year and divide up the money between the kids – this year there was £59 which is a fair sum. Requiring a bit more effort…
- You may have some lost money is via an old bank or saving account, perhaps from childhood that you’ve forgotten about.
- According to the internet (!) there are also millions of unclaimed benefits from Wills of lost or even unknown relatives.
- You may be entitled to a PPI claim – I had dismissed this as a scam until a school pick up conversation in which I was the only person who hadn’t claimed… you can do this for free using the downloads and advice at Money Saving Expert.
- Make sure you have the right tax code, and are claiming for everything you are allowed, for example if you have to wear uniform, specialist clothing or safety equipment for your role (which you pay for yourself) you may be able to reduce your tax bill. It may be that your situation has changed, but your tax code hasn’t and this could make a big difference to your payments.
Let me know if you have any luck, I’m off to print some letters to the bank xx