England’s much-talked-about inflation rate adds another challenge to family financial management. The Bank of England has bumped interest rates in an effort to curb rising costs. And the financial future includes the possibility of gradually easing inflation during the coming year. Even so, many working Britons are still trying to find their financial stride – particularly in urban areas.
It’s widely known London is an expensive place to live, with an inadequate level of affordable housing and other costs higher than the national average. The median annual salary for Londoners approaches £35,000, but a substantial share of the population is doing its best to cover expenses with less money coming in than the average earnings figure. Young people, in particular, are caught-up in a demanding cycle, in which housing and other customary expenses eat-up all or most of their earnings. The trend not only makes it hard for workers to get ahead, but the financial burden is also enough to keep some urban dwellers’ finances moving in the wrong direction.
If your personal financial outlook appears shaky, bending under the weight of London’s high cost of living, tips shared by Money Advice Service staff can help you fix financial imbalance at home.
Finding Better Balance
Each person’s finances are vulnerable in their own way, usually leaving room for further savings and budget improvements. If you know your spending weaknesses, zero-in on the best ways to save. Or start with these strategies for battling London’s high costs.
Start a Spending Diary – Life’s brisk pace can make it hard to keep tabs on all the money you spend – until you get your monthly account statements. But by then you’re already on the hook for repayment. Rather than leaving your cash flow to chance, it makes sense to keep a spending diary, documenting your habits in real time. It only works if you stay on top of the process, which may take some time mastering. Once you’re in the habit of recording what you spend, it’s like second nature. And the results of a well-kept spending diary can help guide you to healthier financial outcomes.
Review Your Rates – From credit card interest rates to the price you pay for TV, analysing your expenses may uncover savings opportunities. Rather than renewing subscriptions and service contracts without review, check your energy rates, communications costs, and other recurring expenses annually. Londoners are at a disadvantage, with fewer bargains to bag, but even the most expensive UK cities yield chances to improve your financial outlook.
Get Your Credit Straight – Credit health is an important concern for Londoners. Maintaining the best possible credit score helps keep credit costs low. As long as you have a job, you’ll have access to short-term financing from various lenders willing to extend payday loans. But a strong credit rating will also open doors to low mortgage rates, affordable personal loans, and funding for your next car purchase.
Find Another Income Stream – Adding to your income requires some doing, but you may be able to up your earnings without upending your life. A hobby-turned-job, part-time lodger, or child-minding operation represent only three of the ways your entrepreneurial spirit could pay off. And since cities are concentrated with employment opportunities, your London address could furnish greater upward mobility, when a job change is your best path to increased earnings.
Put In the Time – Managing money is like any other endeavor. The more time you spend addressing your personal finances, the better chance you have of keeping everything in order and advancing your financial goals. However, the easiest appointments to break are often the ones you make with yourself, which can leave your finances unattended. If you have trouble following through on your best intentions, establishing a financial routine can save you from distress, ensuring you regularly oversee important money matters.
England’s urban centres, particularly London, are among the most expensive places to live. Properly managing credit, adding a side hustle, and staying diligent balancing your cash flow are three proven ways to offset the high costs of living in the capital.