Household Budgets Tighter Than Ever, Says Confused.com

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Report also finds that many households think credit has become harder to access, and more households are finding their debt a burden.

According to research carried out for the Bank of England's Q4 2008 quarterly bulletin, unsurprisingly, households in the UK have experienced a reduction in disposable income after paying bills such as gas and electricity.

Confused.com - who specialize in comparison for utilities, auto insurance and home insurance - have looked at ways to help households ease the pressure of debts and increasing their disposable income.

Simon Lamble, product director at Confused.com comments: "We fully understand that pressure on household income has been increasing steadily over the past couple of years, and therefore it's more important than ever for people to realise that there is a simple way to relieve some of that pressure, by exploring ways of reducing their fixed household costs.

"For example, the average saving made by Confused.com customers this year on home and car insurance was £186.13 and £208.62, respectively. In addition to these savings, customers saved an average of £211.26 by switching to a more economical energy tariff.[1] This equates to a total of £50 per month which could be used to help consumers reduce the debt that they are feeling increasingly burdened by.

By simply spending a short amount of time finding the right product at the right price, people could save £1,000s in unnecessary interest payments and alleviate additional years of debt."

Example: Mortgage
By overpaying by £50 per month customers could save up to £12,253 in interest payments and knock over 3 and a half years off their mortgage term.*
*Statistics based on a 25 year repayment mortgage of £100,000 with an interest rate of 5%.
Source: London & Country mortgage calculator (http://www.lcplc.co.uk)

Example: Credit Card
If customers were to pay off just the minimum, ie 2% of the balance of £5,000 on a credit card each month, assuming an interest rate of 15%, it would take 463 months (over 38 years) to pay back the original amount plus the interest of £7,652.93.

If customers were to make an additional payment of £50 per month, this would reduce the payback period to just 73 months (6 years) and reduce the interest paid to £2,009.77**
**Source: http://www.whatsthecost.com

Notes to editors:
Example: Mortgage

  • Assuming a 25 year repayment mortgage of £100,000 with an interest rate of 5%,

By overpaying by £50 per month monthly payments will increase from £584.59 to £634.59

By overpaying by £50 per month the term of the mortgage will decrease from 25 years to 21 years and 5 months. A saving of 3 years and 7 months.
*Source: London & Country mortgage calculator (http://www.lcplc.co.uk)
Example: Credit Card
** If customers were to pay off just the minimum 2% of the balance of £5,000 on a credit card each month, assuming an interest rate of 15%, it would take 463 months (over 38 years) to pay back the original amount plus the interest of £7,652.93.
If customers were to make an additional payment of £50 per month, this would reduce the payback period to just 73 months (6 years) and reduce the interest paid to £2,009.39.
**Source: http://www.whatsthecost.com

For further information please contact:
Caroline Spindlove/ Anna Bowes, Confused.com. 02920 434 398
Gug Kyriacou/ Joanna Harte, Polhill Communications. 020 7655 0550

About Confused.com:
Confused.com is one of the UK's biggest and most popular price comparison services. Launched in 2002, it generates over one million quotes per month. It has expanded its range of comparison products over the last couple of years to include auto insurance, home insurance, travel insurance, pet insurance, van insurance, motorbike insurance, breakdown cover and energy, as well as financial services products including credit cards, loans, mortgages and life insurance.

Confused.com is not a supplier, insurance company or broker. It provides a free, objective and unbiased comparison service. By using cutting-edge technology, it has developed a series of intelligent web-based solutions that evaluate a number of risk factors to help customers with their decision-making, subsequently finding them great deals on a wide-range of insurance products, financial services, utilities and more. Confused.com's service is based on the most up-to-date information provided by UK suppliers and industry regulators.

Confused.com is owned by the Admiral Group plc. Admiral listed on the London Stock Exchange in September 2004. Confused.com is regulated by the FSA.

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Caroline Spindlove
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