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Earnings and the Minimum Standard of Living

According to research carried out by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, in 2011 families will need to earn 20% more than they did in 2010 to achieve the minimum acceptable standard of living.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation looked into how much different categories of people need to earn to achieve what is considered an acceptable standard of living. It suggests that a couple with two children would need to earn on average 18,400 each (36,800 between them) if they both work, or if only one is working s(he) needs to earn 31,600. To achieve this standard of living single people need to earn 15,000 and a lone parent with one child 18,200.

Exactly how much is needed is a fairly ambiguous debate as different people have different opinions as to what is a “minimum” standard of living, as well as what is realistic. The part of the country that someone lives in is also relevant. For example, this research takes rent as being for a council house / flat, and it is not realistic for everyone earning the amounts outlined above to be entitled to a council property. In reality many will need to pay double this amount in rent (adding between 3,000 and 5,000 a year in rent alone).

So, what is the definition of the minimum standard of living?

According to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation’s research it includes UK holidays (but not holidays abroad), Christmas present, basic mobile phones, and a computer and the internet. It doesn’t, however, include child care, something that is essential for families where both parents are working or single parent families where the lone parent is working. The basics that are included are things such as food, clothes, accommodation, utilities, fuel, household goods, personal goods and services, transport, and social and cultural …

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Top 10 Tips to Creating a Budget Surplus

1.)The first thing is to see if you have a surplus or deficit. People get into credit card trouble when they have a deficit. This is achieved by tracking.

2.) Your goal is to run a 20% surplus each month and save to 3 months of your survival number explained below. You will need

3 months survival money in a money market account. That way if your ever in a financial emergency you have 3 months to get back on your feet.

3.) Write Down all incoming money. Pay check’s, rebates, refunds, reimbursements, everything that comes in, add up every month.

4.) Count how much money is spent each month. This will be the total amount that is out-going every  the end of 3 months divide this number by 3 and that will be your survival number.

5.) Divide your out-going money into 2 categories. The 1st is hard expenses and the 2nd is soft. The difference is items like rent or a car payment are fixed, or hard. Soft items are like groceries that can change every month.

6.) Look at all your hard expenses and attack each item with the intent of lowering. If it’s rent, ask your landlord to lower. If it’s a cell phone bill, call and ask to lower. If a car loan, attempt to refinance a lower rate or payment.

7.) On your soft expenses, make a goal to lower each by 20%. So if your spending $500 a month on average on groceries, work to get this to $400.

8.) The function of counting incoming and outgoing money is compared to a business profit and loss statement. Add your money coming in and subtract the out going. The goal here is to create a surplus and invest this for the long …

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