We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Those on means-tested benefits, such as Universal Credit, will be able to claim a £900 sum in 2023 to help with rising bills. However, experts are wondering “will this be enough” to help people most in need during the ongoing economic turmoil. Households are having to contend with a skyrocketing inflation rate and an unprecedented hike to energy prices.
Outside of Universal Credit, here are the other means-tested benefits from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) which qualify someone for the cost of living payment:
- Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Pension Credit.
Anyone on these benefits will have to be claiming them during certain qualifying periods to get the £900 in support.
Last year, Universal Credit claimants received £650 in cost of living support from the Government.
It has been continued onto this year alongside other cost of living payments for vulnerable groups.
Pensioners and people with disabilities are set to claim an extra £300 and £150 in financial assistance, respectively.
Despite this wave of extra support for those on means-tested benefits, experts are concerned whether it will go far enough.
As it stands, the rate of Consumer Price Index (CPI) for December came to 10.5 percent which is extremely high.
On top of this, energy bills have risen by 27 percent for the average consumer with typical usage since October 2022.
Pete Mugleston, the managing director and money expert at www.onlinemoneyadvisor.co.uk, voiced his anxiety over the cost of living payment.
READ MORE: Recession fears continue despite UK economy growing
The finance expert explained: “The real question is, will this be enough? We very much doubt it.
“There are so many rising costs amongst essential items right now, not least with energy prices and food, that there is a very real chance that this extra money won’t actually cover the monthly increases.
“With the majority of people who are suffering the most also finding themselves in private rental properties with their rent going up, there needs to be a total review of how people could be better helped rather than headline grabbing amounts that don’t really help people when it comes to making a choice of heating or food for their families.”
He also gave advice on how people can improve their circumstances during the cost of living crisis.
Mr Mugleston added: “If you are struggling to keep up with the rising cost of living, my advice would be to speak to your energy supplier, as well as your mortgage lender or landlord, as soon as possible.
“Be open about your situation and they will work with you to find a solution, whether that is lowering your payments or pausing them for a certain period of time.
“Each situation is different, so going directly to them will be the best way to ensure you find financial stability as soon as possible.”
Source: Read Full Article