According to the latest rebuilding Britain index of 20,000 people here in the UK by Legal & General, almost half of them are becoming increasingly concerned that they will not be able to keep up with their mortgage or rental payments as the year progresses. And the least confident people of being able to pay their bills come from Yorkshire, the south west and right here in Northern Ireland.
Many Households Fear They Have No Way Of Making Any More Cuts
The survey found that more than one in eight UK households fear they have no further way to make cuts to afford a sharp increase in annual energy bills this autumn. It looks like inflation will hit the 12% mark later in the year, which could be devastating for so many families who have seen very little rise in their wages across the last few years. Prices on essentials are continuing, and will continue, to rise, and this allied to the huge rise in the cost of fuel and energy prices will push many households to the brink.
Cost Of Living Crisis Felt More Severely In Certain Parts Of The UK
In an article in The Guardian, Nigel Wilson, the chief executive of Legal & General, said:
“Many households across the UK are currently facing very tough financial choices. For some, those choices seem impossible.
“However, what is most concerning is that the impact of the cost of living crisis is being felt more severely in some parts of the UK than in others. This threatens to widen the existing demographic and geographic inequalities that the levelling up agenda was designed to address.”
And with the UK’s petrol prices the second highest in Europe, Simon Williams at the RAC is quoted as saying:
“This analysis lays bare an uncomfortable truth for the UK government – that compared with other European countries, it’s pretty much done the least to support drivers through the current period of record high fuel prices. The result is the UK being one of the most expensive places to fill up and putting it above other countries that have historically charged more for fuel than UK retailers do, including France and the Netherlands.”
This all adds up to very sobering and uncomfortable reading for us all. We have mentioned previously that the government really must step in and help if we are going to get through this crisis without some catastrophic consequences for many households up and down the UK and certainly here in Northern Ireland.