According to the consumer group Which? up to 2.4 million households missed a bill payment between mid-June and mid-July 2023 which is the highest level of missed payments since winter 2022.
The findings show that 1.5 million households defaulted on a household bill payment, such as water, phone, council tax and energy bills and a total of 65% of households claimed that they had missed more than one payment. Additionally, 770,000 households missed or defaulted on a rent or mortgage payment.
The cost of living crisis is continuing to have an impact on households across the UK and the problem could get worse with further interest rate rises predicted for 2023. If you are struggling to make ends meet, there are a number of support avenues available and it is important that you seek help as soon as possible.
What to do if you are struggling to pay bills
If you are struggling to pay household bills, mortgage, rent payments or any other credit payments then it is important to seek help as soon as possible as not doing so could mean that your situation spirals out of control. In the first instance, it is advisable to contact your provider as most have steps in place that can help vulnerable customers and they can often agree on a repayment plan to help you get back on top of your finances.
The government introduced a cost of living support package in 2022 which continues throughout 2023 for the most vulnerable households. Our cost of living guide provides further information on the extent of the support available, who is eligible and additional cost of living money-saving tips.
If you are feeling overwhelmed there are also a number of debt organisations and charities available that can provide support to help you get your finances back on track. We list a number of ways to get financial support in our article, 'Where to get free debt advice'. You may also be eligible to claim certain benefits, and this handy tool can help you to understand if you're entitled to further support.
How to save money on household bills
If you are looking to cut back on your household bills to reduce your monthly outgoings there are a number of ways in which you can save. We share money-saving tips in our article, 'How to save money on your household bills' and the MTTM podcast episode 354 is a money-saving special with a number of tips to help you cut back.