Gas and electricity bills have increased by 54% with another rise due in October. This is on top of the annual increases for other household bills, petrol and food.
Even Martin Lewis, founder of Money Saving Expert, has said he has run out of tools to help people - so what can we do?
Create a budget
Write down your income and expenses. If your expenses are more than your income, you need to consider ways to cut back. This is not easy when most people have already cut spending.
Check your direct debits – can you cancel any subscriptions (if out of contract)? Or, can you speak to the provider about reducing the package?
Do you have debts?
Some accounts are more important to keep on top of than others. Rent, council tax and household bills (including food, travel and clothes), should be paid before debts to credit / store cards, catalogues and other forms of credit.
Consider what the sanctions are for non-payment. Important bills like rent and council tax have high sanctions (eviction and bailiffs), credit debts can only seek a County Court Judgement.
There’s a lot to think about – talking to a Debt Adviser will help!
How can a Debt Advisor help me?
Our Debt Advisors can:
• Help you work through your budget and discuss all the options available to deal with your debts.
• Discuss if there are ways you can maximise your income
• Contact creditors and negotiate new payment arrangements, to make paying your priority accounts more affordable to you.
• Refer you to other forms of advice like employment and benefit advice.
Southway provides tenants with free and confidential advice in all these areas: debt, budgeting, employment, and benefits.
If you are struggling, please contact the Advice Team on 0161 448 4200 or via the form below, or visit the Help with Money section of our website where you'll find a whole host of resources.