The cost of living crisis is only going to get worse before it gets better, with problems peaking in the winter months for millions of us.
Here, our money experts squeeze team Share their 2022 financial planning calendar to help you secure your income over the next few months.
By moving forward, you can control and reduce the pain. , ,
Bill breakdown: Now is the time to check your bills and plan ahead for the summer. According to Barclaycard, households spend an average of £620 per year on membership. What can you cancel to save cash?
Make a budget for the next six months. Apps like MoneyHub and Yoalt can help you see where you’re wasting money.
Beware of roaming charges: Holidaymakers traveling abroad this summer face higher bills for using their mobiles abroad with some networks.
For example, three more EE customers now pay £2 a day in Europe. Check before you travel to avoid a bad bill when you get home.
Posture: If you are going abroad now is the time to think about vacation money. Never buy your cash that day at the airport as you will pay the odds.
If you’re worried about a drop in exchange rates you can always buy half your money now and half before the trip.
Use MoneySavingExpert’s Travel Money Max to compare rates and pre-order. The best duty-free debit cards are from Starling and Chase banks.
Be smart: The school summer holidays are near. Plan them ahead to survive. According to Money Supermarket, families face an average of £1,500 in spending. Contact your local council about free school holiday activities and meal assistance.
Be sure to make use of tax-free childcare, where parents can receive up to £2,000 per year for costs. You can get up to 85 percent of the cost back if you’re working and on Universal Credit.
Cool Tips: As the weather warms up, don’t overfill or underfill your fridge as it will have to work harder to stay cool and will cost you more. When using food, use tap water or fruit bottles to fill it. And defrost your freezer. If you let the ice freeze, it can add up to £150 a year to the bills.
The reverse of hot weather should mean you use less energy around the house. But don’t forget to turn off the devices that are on standby.
Initial Benefit Payout: Universal Credit and other benefits will be paid early due to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Bank Holiday Weekend starting Thursday, June 2. If your payment date falls on 2nd or 3rd June then you will automatically get paid on 1st June.
Remember, this means you have to budget so that your money lasts a little longer until your next payment.
pay raise?: An increase in the National Insurance contribution limit on 6 July means you will not pay NI if you earn less than £12,570.
The change from the previous level of £9,500 would save a typical worker an average of £330 per year.
Use moneysavingexpert.com/tax-calculator To know how it will affect you. If you can afford, save this cash to help with the bills.
Start saving for Christmas: If you want to avoid a financial hangover in 2023, make a budget for this year’s festive period.
According to Marks & Spencer credit cards, we spend an average of £446 on each gift. See how much you spent last year and work on what’s realistic.
An increase in the National Insurance contribution limit on 6 July means you will not pay NI if you earn less than £12,570. The change from the previous level of £9,500 would save a typical worker an average of £330 per year.
Review Tax Credits: Millions of people need to review their working and child tax credits or risk losing thousands of pounds a year.
The tax credit must be renewed every year and the deadline for this is July 31. You can do this online, by mail or by phone. For more information see gov.uk/manage-your-tax-credits,
Claim School Uniform Grant: It’s time to start thinking about getting the kids back to school. Some councils pay up to £150 per child for a similar cost to support low-income families. This is a postcode lottery, so check with your local council to see if you can get money.
Energy Price Range: The energy regulator is expected to fix and announce the new price cap in August.
Families will have until 1 October to prepare for the hike, but bills are predicted to rise by a further £800 a year.
Yesterday, Offgame warned that the average bill could rise to £2,800 per year. Work out how you’ll bear the additional fee, then talk to your provider if you think you’re going to struggle.
Child benefit check: Parents and caregivers whose 16-year-olds are continuing full-time education must notify the government by August 31 or their child benefit payments will stop.
Last year, half a million families were affected by it, according to HMRC. meeting gov.uk/child-benefit-16-19,
take note: The paper notes of £20 and £50 went out of circulation. You have until 30 September to use them in stores.
After this time you will only be able to swap them in banks for new plastic polymer notes. Check the piggy bank and purse to avoid the hassle of exchanging notes.
Insulate now: As the temperature begins to drop, it’s time to review your home’s insulation. Draft-proofing windows and doors can save you up to £45 a year on a typical semi-detached.
Heavy curtains and cheap draft exclusions can also keep the heat in your home. See Energy SavingTrust.org.uk For more tips.
Families will have until 1 October to prepare for the hike, but bills are predicted to rise by a further £800 a year. Yesterday, Offgame warned that the average bill could rise to £2,800 per year.
Heat is on: Before you crank up radiators, check that they don’t have air pockets that prevent them from running efficiently.
If so, they need bleeding, which you can easily do. see guide wickes.co.uk/how-to-guides/home-maintenance/bleed-a-radiator,
Check out Energy Gains: You may be eligible for help with your energy bills this winter and plans will open soon.
Winter fuel payment £300 . pays up to gov.uk/winter-food-payment And this year the warm home discount is increasing to £150, see gov.uk/the-warm-home-discount-scheme, For more information visit Citizen Advice.
Council tax £150 exemption deadline: Council has until the end of this month to pay the £150 council tax exemption for homes in bands A to D. Many households have already received cash, but others who do not pay by direct debit should be paid by this deadline.
Councils have also been given a portion of a £144million pot of “discretionary funding” to help struggling families. It should be used by the end of the month. If you are hard hit, apply to your local authority as soon as possible for assistance.
Increase in energy bill: If current estimates are correct, the average bill will increase from £1,971 to £2,800 from 1 October. This is a brutal increase. Plan ahead now and focus on how you will cover the increase.
Energy bill £200 discount: This month customers will get an energy discount of £200 on bills. But it is a loan and will be automatically repaid on bills over five years, starting next year, when wholesale prices are expected to decline.
black Friday: It falls on November 25. It is great if you are well prepared and can bargain for Christmas gifts but avoid useless deals. Pay attention to what you want to buy in early November, and check prices regularly.
Get the free or cheap white stuff: Low-income families who can’t attend Black Friday can get help with cheap or free fridges, rugs, and furniture. See endfurniturepoverty.org/find-furniture either Turn2us.org.uk for help.
Payment in cold weather: Families receive £25 for a period of seven consecutive days where the temperature is below zero degrees Celsius. The scheme reopens on 1st November and runs till 31st March gov.uk/cold-weather-payment,
Apply for Energy Grant: If you are in debt to your supplier, you should try for an energy subsidy to help pay it off. Each energy firm has its own pot of cash but many close for 2022.
Families usually have until March 31 to apply but double-check. Find out more at the Citizens Advice website.
Stock up for Christmas: Start thinking about what food you can buy early to spread the cost of Christmas. Focus on items with long expiration dates like Christmas cakes, snacks, and chocolates.
Some readers tell me that they start preparing much earlier in the year – but the best thing you can do is to plan ahead for finance management.
Routing for: Don’t buy your Christmas dinner wedges too early. Supermarkets usually engage in a price war a week before December 25.
Last year, Iceland slashed bags of frozen wedges from £1 to 1p, while Aldi and Lidl cut the price of carrots, parsnips and so on by up to 19p each.