Household finances have been squeezed “left, right and centre”

The average UK household spend reached the highest level since before the financial crisis as finances get squeezed “left, right and centre”.

UK households spent £554.20 per week in the year to the end of last March, according to new ONS data, marking a rise of £21.20 in real terms when compared with the previous year.

Transport was the top spending category, with an average of £79.70 shelled out a week on transport between April 2016 and March 2017 – an increase of £5.40 in real terms on 2016.

Expenditure on food, non-alcoholic drinks, communication, restaurants and hotels also saw particularly stark increases during the year, while spending on clothing and footwear, household goods, services, recreation and culture also witnessed a boost.

Commenting on the results, Samantha Seaton, CEO of Moneyhub said: “Over the last year household finances have been squeezed left, right and centre, with the price of food, transport, bills, and our other everyday essentials all going up.

“With real term wages falling, people are increasingly reliant on debt to help them cover the cost of living. The latest report by the IFS shows that one in ten households has more than £10,000 of unsecured debt, whether it’s through loans, credit cards, or finance agreements.

“Technology has transformed the way we interact with our money. But with so many things to juggle, it can be really hard to keep track of all your outgoings and see where savings or cutbacks can be made.

“By using a digital financial management tool, you can manage your finances in one place. This not only makes saving easier, but also peace of mind much more achievable. Having greater financial wellbeing is one of the most common New Year resolutions, so this month is a great time to take control.”

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