How to Survive on a Low Income

ID-100137441If you are currently living on a low income, you already know how difficult it can be to make ends meets. You may often have enough trouble paying all the necessary bills and have very little left over for anything else.

While it is true that living on a low income can be difficult, there are effective ways to manage your money, and help you can receive that will put more money into your pocket. This may help to make living on a low income easier to deal with on a day-to-day basis.

Create a Budget
Household budgets are an important part of managing money, no matter how much you make. It helps you track both your income and expenses to make sure you are spending your money wisely. You should start by tracking all your expenses for a few weeks. This will give you a clearer picture of where you are spending your money. Based on this information, create a household budget that shows how much money you have available to spend in different categories, such as housing, transport, and food. Try to create a budget that leaves you a little money to save each month.

Help with Basic Living Expenses
If you are considered low-income, the government offers several different benefits to offset your current household expenses. These benefits can be used to help cover some of the everyday expenses and leave you with more money to use towards other things, as well as, extra money to put into a savings account.

– Housing. There are several governmental programs that you can use to offset your housing cost. The Housing Benefit helps to cover a portion of your monthly rent. The amount the government will pay depends on your annual income and family size. You can also get help to offset some your utility expenses with programs like the Winter Fuel Payment, the Cold Weather Payment, and the Council Tax Reduction.

– Food. While there are no governmental benefits specifically for food, you can apply for Income Support or Pension Credit. This will provide you will a monthly sum of money that a portion can be used to offset your food costs. In addition, there are various food banks that give free food every month to those with a low-income.

– Childcare. You can also get help paying for childcare, so you can go out and find a job. This will help offset a portion of your weekly childcare payment to make these services more affordable to you.

Additional Help Available
If you are currently having a financial emergency and you need help right away, you may be able to take out a no, or low interest loan through the government. Both Budgeting Loans and Crisis Loans are offered to low income earners with no interests. They will set up a payment arrangement with you that allows you to repay the low in small increments over a longer period of time.

If you are a low-income earner, the first thing you want to do is to make sure you are receiving all of the benefits you are qualified for. This will help to offset some of your regular expenses and put more money back into your pocket. This will also help you budget your money better and may help you save up for a higher-ticketed items or put some money into a savings account for the future.

Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography /

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