Martin Lewis's Latest Money Trick Can Earn People Thousands

You can end up quids in by making two simple phone calls.
Martin Lewis from Money Saving Expert.
Stefan Rousseau via PA Wire/PA Images
Martin Lewis from Money Saving Expert.

As the cost of living crisis continues, Brits are doing whatever they can to find ways of earning more money. And wouldn’t it be amazing to find out that you’re owed some serious cash?

It might sound like a dream, but according to Money Saving Expert’s Martin Lewis, making two small phone calls could change your financial status considerably.

On an episode of The Martin Lewis Money Show Live, one person shared how listening to the money pro’s advice helped him make up to £26,000.

So, what do you need to know?

For anyone of a certain age, finding out how much you’ve contributed to your National Insurance contributions could be the answer to your financial prayers, as you could end up being owed thousands of pounds by the time you retire.

This is because the amount of money you receive from the government in state pension is reliant on how much you’ve contributed to your National Insurance.

Essentially, you have to have been paid more than a specific amount for at least 35 different years in order to be eligible for the full state pension payout.

But, if you don’t qualify for the full amount, there’s a way to increase your state pension. All you have to do is ‘buy’ more National Insurance years for your work history with

The deadline to apply to buy back all those years goes back to 2006 and was scheduled to pass this week. However, Martin Lewis reported in his last episode that the government has extended it to April 5 2025.

“Some of you have more time but I would still get onto considering it pretty quickly,” Lewis said.

He went on to explain that: “These transitional arrangements allow you to plug any gaps back to 2006. After the transitional period, you can only go back six tax years (2017). You can see how many years won’t be in play after that and that’s why it’s so important.”

The first thing you want to do is look up your National Insurance record and check for incomplete years on the website.

If you find that you’re missing NI years, go and get your state pension forecast (on government gateway).

“So if you’re missing years since 2006 and you’re not forecast to get the full amount, now you’re in the sweet spot where you should be considering buying years if you can’t get them for free,” Lewis said.

He suggested that everyone over the age of 45 should find out and check, before adding: “When you buy a year, it adds £300 a year to your state pension, currently that is inflation proof. If you pay £800, you get £300.

“So your break-even point is three years. And the life expectancy for a man who hits 65 is 85,” he explains.

One viewer shared his luck with the money expert’s advice: “I had holes in my NI contributions, a six-year hole with voluntary contributions costing £4,893.20. I paid and now my pension will go up by £1,650.48. If I live to the average male age expectancy, I will be in the black by £26,465!”

However, Lewis explains that before you go on with all of this, you should make two phone calls. “This is a clarion call for action to the nation but it’s not to do without checking,” Lewis says.

The first step is to call the future pension centre for advice on your NI record to see if increasing it will boost up your state pension because it is complicated, he said.

“But then, after the jammed up phone lines, if it is right for you, you then have to call HMRC to get an 18-digit reference code which you need so you can pay the money into the right account and that can be very busy too,” he added.