FEELING THE SQUEEZE? - Here are six ideas to help you stay in control of your money.

Sarah Fowler has recently been appointed as Head of Services at Derby City Mission. But, before taking the step up into this role, Sarah headed up our Jubilee Project team and is an experienced debt and benefits advisor. Her knowledge has helped hundreds of people review their finances and take the steps necessary to get themselves back on track.

Sarah has taken some time out of her day to write down some helpful tips for you to explore today. This list is not an exhaustive list, but a healthy place to start if you've recently been feeling the pinch. 

So, if you’re feeling the squeeze on your finances right now, here are six ideas to help you stay in control of your money. 

1. Use a Benefit Calculator

If your household income is less than £30,000 per year, we would recommend you use a benefits calculator to check that you are getting all the support you’re entitled to. It usually takes about 15 minutes but it could help to increase your income. There are many you could use, they do a similar job. We use www.entitledto.co.uk

six ideas  to help you stay in control of your money - Entitledto Benefit Calculator

2. Set Yourself a Budget

Whatever your income, set yourself a budget and commit to sticking to it. Good questions to ask yourself are - can I get this cheaper? Is there a better way of doing this? Do I still need this? A good online budgeting tool is found on www.moneyhelper.org.uk or there are many free apps you could try.

3. Review Your Standing Orders and Direct Debits 

Take a look at your Direct Debits and Standing Orders – are these for essential bills? Is there anything that you can do without? Is there anything you don’t remember setting up? There could be things you're paying for you no longer need. A word of caution though, if it is an insurance policy or phone contract, you will need to speak to the provider before cancelling them unless you are still on a contract with them.

4. Reduce The Cost of Your Bills

Look at each household bill you have and look at how you might be able to reduce the cost. Cheaper Broadband - make sure your usage matches your plan. Rather than going over and having to add more data, a cheaper way would be a plan with higher data. Cheaper insurance – comparison shop at your next renewal. Reduce your credit card interest rate and aim for a zero-interest transfer to mean any payments are making a real difference towards reducing your debt.

5. Beware of Loan Sharks!

They often use online channels like social media to try to lend to people. This type of lending is illegal and can cost you far more than you realised.

Six ideas  to help you stay in control of your money - Loan Sharks

6. Seek out Professional Support

If you are drowning, feel overwhelmed, if your sleep is affected by worry then don’t delay. Tell someone how you’re feeling and seek help! There is hope and there are solutions. Come to one of our Jubilee Debt and Benefits clinics.


If you're NOT struggling with finances and are in a position to support others, please consider donating to Derby City Mission. Your funds could help ensure the continuation of vital services such as our Debt and Benefits Advice Jubilee Project which helps people get back on their feet and truly transform lives. Click the button below for more information about how to donate.

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