10 million UK adults struggle to make ends meet

23 Mar, 2022

Brits are battling rising household bills, food costs and energy prices as the economy grapples with extensive inflation. Chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to take centre stage, delivering his Spring Statement this afternoon, as the public seeks more immediate solutions to the cost-of-living crisis at hand. While we anticipate what’s to come, research commissioned by MetLife shows that Brits were already struggling to make ends meet last year, prior to the current events unfolding, meaning they may even be worse off this year.

  • One in five ((19%) Brits say they are not financially resilient and wouldn’t be able to make ends meet without the help of a loan or credit card
  • Almost a third (29%) confirmed their finances have worsened thanks to the ongoing pandemic
  • One in four (25%) worryingly have no disposable income to fall back on should they need it
  • A third of Brits say they worry about their financial situation when thinking about the short-term, 6-12 months, falling slightly to 31% when thinking about the longer-term, more than 12 months.

Rich Horner, Head of Individual Protection at MetLife, comments: “Many have had to face our financial fears as we weather the cost-of-living crisis at hand, so it’s so important that individuals and families are as prepared as they can be to ensure they have taken care of what is important to them. Whether it is household bills, family sports activities or financial protection, how paying for these costs are prioritised will vary based on individual circumstances. But when the global backdrop is uncertain, often protection is one of the few purchases that can help enhance peace of mind at times like these.

“We need to support and encourage people to review what solutions are out there in the immediate future but also the longer-term, such as financial protection – a safety net that in cases such as illness, time off work or an accident– can make a real difference.  Ultimately, it’s important that people plan today to help their future selves to feel and become, financially resilient and plan for the unexpected. If the last two years has taught us anything, it is that the most unexpected of circumstances can arise when we least expect it.”

Rich Horner, Head of Individual Protection at MetLife, shares three tips to help people feel more financially secure

 

  1. Create a Budget

Setting and then maintaining a budget- be it weekly or monthly- is fundamental to understanding your spending capacity and ensuring you keep track of your current and future outgoings. A budget allows you to put aside saving towards a long-term goal, helps avoid overspending and prepares you for financial emergencies. If your bank does not have a spending tracker, check out budget tracking apps like Money Dashboard, Yolt or Plum to get you on track. Whilst meeting current financial commitments can be difficult, a budget can also highlight any areas to explore for future savings.

  1. Saving to Spend

A savings plan offers a financial safety net in case of a crisis, a rainy day, or for reaching a long-term goal. While you may not be emotionally ready for an emergency you should always be financially prepared where you can. The events of the past year have caused many people to re-evaluate their financial situation as some faced job losses, decreased income, and increased outgoings. Other than emergencies, a savings plan can help with future life events such as buying a house or starting a family.

  1. Look into Insurance

In what has been a very uncertain time, our research found that 16% of people cite having a reduced income and having to dip into savings as a major concern for the next six months. Feelings of anxiety when it comes to money can be a good motivator for people to seek extra assistance, as nobody wants to have to worry about their long-term finances – it can be emotionally draining.

For peace of mind, a good place to start is putting protection in place to cover larger monthly outgoings such as mortgage payments for homeowners. At a time when financial stability is low, it’s important to plan for every eventuality and to give you maximum peace of mind.