important discoveries

 


It's no great secret that the cost of living in the UK is constantly on the rise, and news reports suggest they are indeed getting increasingly worse.   


So far this week I have discovered that not only food prices have increased, and are still on the rise depending of course where you shop, but also the government has introduced the health and social care tax, which you now must pay on top of your National Insurance costs.   For the most part I do agree with this tax because it will go towards helping fund the NHS, which we of course must continue to support in any way we can.   On the other hand, I wonder how this will affect me financially, and what impact it will it have long term, especially considering my partner and I are trying to save so we can afford a place to rent.   

 

They say the increase is going to be 1.25% extra on top of what everyone is already paying to the NI.  That's if you are earning below £50k a year, which I am (and probably always will).  On first calculations I think for me that may be an extra £6...roughly, that I will have to pay towards my National Insurance.   So it will be interesting to see how that will affect my pay going forward.  It doesn't sound a lot.   Perhaps I won't notice the difference.   Wishful thinking I know.   That was certainly interesting to find that out this evening on one of my favorite websites  https://moneyweek.com/  I use this website a lot for many things, money news of course, business news, rates, product news too.   I find it very useful indeed. 


One cost I have noticed a huge difference in,  and to no one's surprise, is fuel prices.   The cost of a full tank of petrol for me has gone up from an average of £30, to about £38.   That's £38 I pay out every two weeks or so. And that's only because I have a small car.  I can't imagine how much more it is for someone who has a large car.  The car I share with my partner is a new silver 2019 Peugeot, which is very economic thankfully.   These days you need an economic veheicle, especially if, like us you are planning to keep on a petrol car and not swapping immediately onto an electric car.   I do believe electric cars are the way forward.  Since everyone's been saying oil's been running out literally for years, going electric definitely makes sense to me.


In the meantime, is there anything you can do about it.   Well there is the obvious solution, which is to cut back on something else to free up some spare cash.  If that's not easily possible, which for most of us it definitely isn't,  I find that if you drive in a slightly higher gear than you normally do,  it could save you a little extra petrol that will make your car run for a little longer.   Try it, it works for me. 


Prices will of course keep rising.  A good idea is at the start of every month or whenever your wage go in, is to set a monthly budget.   Decide what you need to buy that month, or bills you have to pay out for,  including petrol,  food and treats.   It allows you to maintain a healthy bank balance,  without going into your overdraft or using your credit cards.  In effect you could end up saving more money than you first imagined, and that is such a good feeling.  


Just a little tip I would like to share with everyone.   If you are currently counting your pennies and  concerned about food prices at all this week, the cheapest supermarket at the moment is Lidl.   And it is beating it's rivals Aldi by 74p which you might not think makes much of a difference but pennies do add up after all.  So maybe save a bit and shop at Lidl for a couple of weeks instead.   Also baring that in mind, if you do shop at Waitrose, you will be expected to pay an extra £9.14 roughly, on top of petrol costs to get there...unless you live across the road from them of course.


Thanks for reading


Sarah










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