Budgets ‘to be squeezed’ later in 2010

The second half of next year will be the worst time for UK family budgets, it has been predicted.

Martin Bamford of chartered financial planners Informed Choice pinpointed this period on the basis that this is when higher taxes, peak levels of unemployment and increased interest rates will all hit consumers.

He stated that those with debt management issues should look to budget carefully to help manage, as well as paying off some of what they owe.

“In the short-term, they should do what they can to pay off expensive unsecured debts, such as credit cards, which are likely to be used over the Christmas period,” Mr Bamford advised.

Those looking to do this may be able to achieve such an aim by taking out a cheaper credit card that has a zero-interest period, during which time the balance can be reduced to lower subsequent payments.

Asda supermarket group’s Income Tracker produced figures this week suggesting that the average family budget is now £8 more than a year ago.

However, this growth has been eroding recently, it noted, with higher motoring costs being the main cause.

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