Inflation is at the highest rate since 1997, with the cost of living worsening due to rising energy bills and the Ukraine crisis. Insurance expert at A-plan Insurance, Catherine Grayson, shared how Britons can manage their money more effectively to subside rising costs.
Switching to monthly payments for certain bills and services can help ease the cash crunch many households are facing.
With some bills that are unavoidable, like council tax, this can ease the burden on monthly paycheques by spreading out the costs.
The council tax rebate available to households in bands A to D is expected to help 20 million homes in England this month.
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The £150 rebate will not need to be repaid, unlike the £200 energy loan which will be paid back over the next five years.
However, not everyone will qualify for the rebate to begin with and those that do may find it to be small compared to their council tax rises also due this month.
Ms Grayson recommended spreading the tax bill over either 10 or 12 months, making it “slightly less troublesome”.
She explained: “Currently, many people pay their council tax manually or over 10 months as this structure may suit the council. However, you are perfectly entitled to spread this over 12 months as this will avoid 10 high payments and then two months with no cost.
Ms Grayson noted that for households that don’t qualify for reductions or discounts could pay this fee through direct debit over 12 months.
She shared: “If you choose to pay this through direct debit, for the first six months you may have to pay £26.50 before it rolls onto a 12 monthly bill of £13.25 a month.”
Aside from easing the burden on their pockets, Britons can also benefit from having their licence automatically renewed when it expires.
Britons over the age of 75 and claiming Pension Credit can receive a free TV licence
Additionally, people who are blind or visually impaired can receive a reduced rate.
Another unavoidable cost of living and a rising cost for many families, utilities are expected to increase with fuel prices being the most concerning.
Ms Grayson shared that there will be a £35 annual price hike for water beginning this month.
She noted: “After this price kicks in, spreading the payments can help and you can do this by contacting your provider. You may not be aware but, depending on circumstances, most have schemes that cap the bill at under £100.”