The cost-of-living crisis has a short-term impact on financial resilience of course. But something that is not talked about so much is shutting down social activity and spending less time with friends, loved ones, and community groups.
The figure below shows how people have been cutting back, both in September 2022 and January 2023. 54% of respondents said they were cutting back on heating, 41% said they were cutting back on social and leisure and 31% said they were cutting back on food/groceries. These are worrying figures for both physical and mental health and a sure sign that times are hitting people hard.
The Guardian has also reported that people are cutting back on groceries, clothes shopping and eating out but increasing streaming and pay TV subscriptions as ‘cash-conscious viewers switch to nights in’. “Brits are still trying their hardest to shave money off their weekly shop, as energy bills continue to rise,” said Esme Harwood, a director at Barclays.
Although we are still seeing record inflation, there is some hope that it may fall quickly this year. Either way, we must look after ourselves and each other and ensure we are still heating space in our home to a comfortable, healthy level, eating well, and getting out to see friends and family.
Story By Nathan Jamieson -Energy advisor