The UK population is getting older with many of us enjoying healthier lives well into our 70’s. In just the last 40 years, the numbers of people aged over 65 living in the UK has grown from 14.2% to 18%, and this trend is set to continue.
But it’s not only the over 65’s age group that is seeing an upward trend, the fastest growing age group is actually the over 85’s. In 2016 there was just 1.6 million people aged 85 years and above, whereas the projected population figures are expected to double by 2066. There are many varying factors that have improved our life expectancy which include, lifestyle, nutrition, education, environment, genetics and socioeconomic status.
Getting older inevitably does mean we will retire at some point, but as there is no longer an age that we must retire by, many of us who feel fit and healthy may continue to work. Continuing to work not only has great health benefits as it keeps us active and social, but it can also help financially. If you are receiving a regular monthly income you may choose to delay drawing down any pension schemes that you have been saving into and this also includes your State Pension. To find out what this entails, visit the Government website for further information: https://www.gov.uk/deferring-state-pension/what-you-get
But regardless of when you actually retire as soon as you hit 50 you can take advantage of certain benefits that will help you reduce your living costs.
Here’s a few benefits you may wish to explore further.
You may have to hunt for discounts if you’ve just hit your 50’s but don’t think there aren’t any out there! Even though they may not be as obvious, there are still some great deals to be had. Greater Anglia has a dedicated Club 50 scheme which for £20 per year offers discounted rail fares, and many 2 for 1 deal’s for attractions, entertainment, restaurants and landmarks. Make sure you hunt for the not so obvious deals such as cheaper broadband from companies like POP Telecom as well.
As you get older it’s fair to say that the deals do get more obvious. For people with long term medical conditions Free Prescriptions from the NHS (https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/help-nhs-prescription-costs/free-nhs-prescriptions) will certainly help save money. You can also get a free eye test and 25% off at Specsavers. If you’re planning to eat out look for restaurants who offer a discounted price for people over 60. Boots also offer an over 60’s Health Club scheme where you can save money as you spend.
Now you’ve reached 65 you can enjoy even more benefits such as a free bus pass, free flu jabs and if you were born before 5th November 1953 you are eligible to claim a winter fuel allowance of between £100 and £300 per household (the date of course changes every year).
Of course, when you’ve reached 75 you will be enjoying all the benefits you’ve gathered along the way but now you can finally watch free TV as you will be entitled to a free TV licence! If you are now living on your own, make sure you have informed your local council, so you can receive a 25% discount on your Council Tax payments.