The value of charitable donations made by direct debit rose by 4.1 per cent to more than £1.21bn in 2014, according to figures released today by Bacs Payment Schemes.
Bacs, which processes direct debit payments in the UK, said that in the 12 months to the end of December 2014 the total number of donations made by direct debit increased from 58 million to just over 60 million.
Housing charities enjoyed the biggest growth in the total value of donations by direct debit, at 9.6 per cent, followed closely by older people’s charities, at 9.4 per cent. In terms of the number of donations by direct debit, those to housing charities grew by 3.9 per cent, those to older people’s charities by 2.2 per cent.
The environment sector experienced a 7.1 per rise in the number of donations by direct debit but only a 5 per cent increase in value.
Since 2011, the overall number of direct debit donations has increased by six million, or about 11 per cent.
Graham Callaghan, charity sector specialist at Bacs, said: "We know that automated payments are cost-effective for charities because they are cheaper to process than the likes of cash and cheques, while they are also easy and convenient for those donating. Converting supporters to direct debit also increases retention rates, affecting long-term collection levels."