Scary money facts for Spooky Season
Spooky season is officially here!
Now that autumn is in full swing, with Halloween fun, indulging in all the pumpkin spice lattes, and getting in our annual Hocus Pocus and The Nightmare Before Christmas marathon, we wanted to talk about some of the scary money facts we’ve come across recently. Because the last thing we want is for money issues to freak us out.
- According to a poll by Royal London, 33% of employees have considered reducing or completely stopping their pension contributions because of the cost of living crisis.
We all know how powerful an employer match in a workplace pension is (it’s free money!). This stat is doubly scary because it impacts both your present and future finances. If at all possible, we suggest continuing with your pension contributions.
- Research by charity Christians Against Poverty has revealed that 25% of adults in Britain would struggle to pay an unexpected £200 bill .
The cost of living crisis has caused a debt crisis for many. While they might be tricky to build up, this stat highlights the importance of a rainy day fund. We hope they won’t happen, but we can be prepared for them if they do. Emergency funds are tricky to build up, but once you’ve got one the work a treat in emergencies! (see what we did there). Having one keeps you financially fit and able to cope with unexpected expenses. To start yours, look at your outgoings and put an achievable amount away each month.
- Women are retiring with £123,000 less in their pension pots than men, on average (Scottish Widows Women and Retirement Report, 2022).
There are many alarming gender gaps when it comes to money. This includes a Wage Gap, an Earnings Gap, a Wealth Gap, an Investing Gap, a Divorce Gap, and a Grooming Gap (yes, we googled it too). But the most staggering is the Pensions Gap. There are many reasons for this, including women doing the bulk of unpaid care work, and taking career breaks to start a family. This is also known as the Motherhood Penalty.
4. Unfair VAT rules on women’s essential hygiene products still exist in 2023
Some progress has been made on this — the UK government abolished the ‘Tampon Tax’ in 2021, meaning consumers no longer have to pay VAT on period products like pads and tampons. But, period underwear is still taxed at 20% because current VAT rules classify them as clothing.
5. We haven’t felt the full effect of the cost of living on our mortgages yet
50% of people are currently avoiding remortgaging with a new lender, which is an all-time high. Experts say this is likely due to a fear of failing affordability checks. However, with 1.6 million fixed-rate deals due to end in 2024, we’re only just seeing the start of remortgaging pains. And it’s not just homeowners who’ll bear the brunt of this – there’s evidence to suggest it’ll trickle into the rental market (sorry).
These money facts might not make you feel great. We get it. But knowing they exist in the first place will help you plan for them, which means you’ll still be on the way to achieving your biggest money goals.