Regular household bills are rising relentlessly despite inflation remaining flat, according to figures from Bacs Payment Schemes , the people behind Direct Debit in the UK.
A “basket” of the most common household bills paid by Direct Debit – including energy, water, mortgages and rent, council tax, broadband and phone, TV licensing, and household insurances – has been tracked, with historical data used to look back as far as 2007. And the data shows the average amount paid out has gone up from £565 in pre-recessionary June 2007 to £668 in June 2015.
The data is drawn from 100 million actual anonymous monthly transactions processed by Bacs as householders use Direct Debits to pay for their essential household bills – it does not include elective personal bills such as gym memberships or mobile phone payments.
Seasonal differences in bills like energy are evened out by comparing each month with the same period in a previous year. For example, in January 2007, the average amount householders spent on core bills was £549. In the same month during 2015, the average figure was £662 – an increase of £113 or 21 per cent.
The Bacs Bill Tracker clearly shows that with the exception of small, occasional monthly falls, coupled with a constantly low rate of inflation, the pressure on households to find extra cash to pay for essentials has seen a continuing rise.
Mike Hutchinson from Bacs said: “These new figures – drawn from actual anonymised payments we have processed – reflect the financial burden householders face as the price of household bills increases steadily.
“With 71 per cent of regular bills paid by Direct Debit, this data gives a clear indication of the upward financial pressures across a basket of core household bills. Splitting costs across the year could relieve some of the strain on hard-pressed family purses and, with the discounts offered from many billers and service providers for paying by Direct Debit, there’s an opportunity to save some vital pounds.”
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