Research from Equifax reveals that people are managing debt better in 2014
After the 2014 budget was released Equifax released its own figures proving that consumers are managing to take better care of their debts despite the fact that the cost of living is continuing to increase. The latest research to come from Equifax shows that almost 30% of people do not have any debt on credit cards, payday loans, store cards, or any other credit agreements that must be paid off in 12 months or less. In addition, about 40% of consumers in the study had the same debt that they did a year ago with about a third stating that their disposable income increased or stayed steady over the past year.
Neil Munroe, External Affairs Director for Equifax believes these figures demonstrate consumers successfully managing their finances and trying to pay off their debts even though they continue to face quite difficult economic circumstances.
“Conducted ahead of this month’s Budget, our latest research provides insight into the way that people are managing their money and trying to put themselves in the best financial position as possible. It’s not surprising that consumers feel the pinch with daily expenses as the cost of living increases whilst earnings haven’t changed much, but it’s great to see that the increased financial pressure is being coped with well. Indeed, with 46% of respondents saying that they put savings away each month from their disposable income there’s a real sense of prudent financial management amongst UK consumers.”
One area of concern, however, that the Equifax figures have highlighted is the fact that nearly half of consumers would stop paying into their pension if their financial situation changed and they needed to make savings. Life insurance cover would also be stopped by over 40% of respondents to the Equifax research, and nearly half would stop paying their home building insurance.
“You can never know when your financial situation will change so it is important for consumers to keep track of their regular outgoings,” continues Neil Munroe. “Consumers should keep a close eye on their finances, including regularly checking their credit report. It is not unusual to receive an unexpected high bill, particularly after the winter months, but having clear sight of your finances will put you in the best possible position to know how you can pay it off and where you could potentially cut back in spending.”
The Equifax Credit Report is accessible for 30 days free simply by logging onto www.equifax.co.uk. If customers do not cancel before the end of the 30 Day Free Trial, the service will continue at £9.95 per month, giving them unlimited online access to their credit information and weekly alerts on any changes to their credit file. It also includes an online dispute facility to help them correct any errors on their credit file simply and quickly.