Reduced Income and Tax Credits making me struggle monthly

On June 28, 2011, in News, by Lewis Alexander

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  • “It was all going swimmingly.

My main job as the school secretary was bringing in about £1000 a month.  The pub shift on a Friday night gave me a further £150 a month and the tax credits contributed that final few hundred quid extra that was making the difference between being able to get around Tesco & funding the kids lunch monies versus being permanently squeezed between spending on food, household essentials, and utilities.

Now, with my tax credit recalculated and for some reason reduced, its forced me to apply for a better paid job / income, which I am frightened is going to take me away from spending as much time with the kids!  The world these days just seems to be one giant bill, and I can’t find any way to reduce mine, without impacting the kids and the time spent with them!

I had already started to feel the pinch as every time I went round the supermarket, the same food seemed to cost more!  So, I made sacrifices; the food budget was stretched, treats like chocolate and fizzy pop became ‘persona non grata’ as far as the shopping list was concerned! Big name brands were quickly ditched for the ‘Value’ range!  Cue a child revolt, as the value beans didn’t go down too well, but I found that with thought and careful planning I could keep their lunch boxes fun and healthy even on the tightest of reduced income or budgets.

Then there is the small matter of the ever increasing cost of paying the gas and electric bills!  First our summer holiday at mum’s caravan was cut out, but now I am struggling to even pay for the school trips to the Science Museum! It’s starting to make a massive difference to our lives!

Well, I could not deny the £25 for the Science museum, so I borrowed it from one of those new internet lending sites.  What a mistake that was! As I now need to find money that I simply don’t have from next week’s budget otherwise I won’t make the payment and that telephone number interest rate is going to bite back at me!  It just feels like I am being sucked into a cycle of debt.”

  • Sound familiar?

Across the UK, thousands of families are feeling the pinch following the latest round of decisions on tax credits.  Despite increasing from £18bn in 2003 to £30bn in 2010, this latest decisions have really hit the pockets of some of those up against it financially.  To some this has meant they have lost a small amount of secondary income that some basic re-budgeting can sort out.  However some families depend on those extra monies to pay for life’s essentials, such as to clear debts.

As we heard in the story above, the price of food and utilities has rocketed in the past 2-3 years since the financial crash or credit crunch.  Utility bills alone have risen to £560million in the last year according to u-switch.   Some 24.9 million households have been affected. When we couple this with the soaring price of petrol and the effect this has on food prices then the pressure is really on for those families already on a reduced income or budget.

In the post credit crunch lending markets, it is no longer easy to borrow that little bit extra to tide you over.  That with the static figures that are being returned on UK Salary Price Rises and for some, the only means of borrowing left is the new ‘quick cash’ lender.  These loans typically range between a week and 30 days, with hefty arrangement fees (in comparison to loan amounts) and a real sting in the tail, if the borrower misses a payment once the loan is repayable.

  • If these issues ring a bell in your home and you feel like you are swimming against the tide financially, then maybe we can help.
  • Our trained specialists are vastly experienced in dealing with a range of personal debt circumstances and people suffering from a reduced income, you can call us in confidence 24 hours, 7 days a week, on 0800 018 6868.
  • No matter how complex or tough you think your debt problem is, get in touch to see if we can start making a change to your financial life today!
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