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Managing your money and benefits
We've put together some advice to help you get the most out of your money and find support if you need with your finances.
Check what benefits you are entitled to
Each year, millions of people miss out on claiming benefits that they’re entitled to.
You can use our free and confidential benefits calculator, supplied by national charity group Turn2Us, to help you find out what benefits you can claim. It's easy to use and typically only takes a few minutes.
You can also find help and advice on managing your money or making a benefits claim on the Turn2Us website.
Sit down with a pen and paper and add up what you’re spending each month. Think about how much you spend on things like:
- gas and electricity
- council tax
- going out and socialising
- anything else?
You could try using a budgeting tool such as the one offered by Citizens Advice, to help you understand what you’re earning and spending and where you might be able to cut costs.
Save on your utilities bills
- Search for the best rates for gas, electricity and mobile deals using comparison sites like https://www.uswitch.com/ or https://www.confused.com/
- Call your current supplier and ask for a better deal
- Try a local community energy supplier.
- Some of the best deals are on the internet – make sure you shop around and try looking for online discounts and vouchers - some retailers have regular special deals
- When your mobile phone contract runs out and you have paid for your phone, switch to a SIM only deal - you could potentially save £15-£20 a month.
- Switching to lower cost supermarkets, or buying own-brand, can save you money.
- Money Saving Expert offers lots of useful tricks and tips that can help you and your family to save money.
Savings and loans
If you can, try to start saving. Putting a little money away each month soon adds up and means you’ll be better prepared for whatever the future holds.
If you need some extra money to get you by, then you could set up a Credit Union account where you can save and get a loan. Find your nearest Credit Union.
It’s very important to avoid loan sharks – they’re illegal and charge the highest rates.
Check your council tax
If you are the only adult in the property, you can get a 25% discount on your council tax payments.
You could also consider comparing your Council Tax band to other homes in your postcode area to check you’re paying the same amount. If you’re paying more then you can ask your local council to consider re-banding your property. Contact your local Council for help with this.
There are also a range of benefits to support you with Council Tax depending on your circumstances. You can use our benefits calculator to check you’re receiving what you’re entitled it.
Worried about falling behind in your rent payments?
If you're worried about falling behind in your rent payments, we can offer you practical help and support based on your personal circumstances. Please don't put off speaking to us if you have any concerns - contact us as soon as you can for advice and guidance.