Price Rises, The Year So Far
It seems like everywhere you look, prices are on the rise. From food to fuel, energy to inflation, here is our round up of price rises so far and how we can hopefully help.
Bank of England - Base Rate
Since December 2021, the Bank of England has increased the key interest rate, Bank Rate, from 0.1% to 1.25%. According to their website, this is to try and bring inflation back down although it will take time to work.
There is a target of 2% but currently the inflation rate is higher, this is largely due to two main factors:
Prices of goods coming from abroad
Large increase in the cost of energy
This is why the interest rate has increased several times over the past few months.
According to Financial Times, the biggest contributor to the increase in inflation came from food prices, which increased 1.5% in May, with bread, cereal and meat prices rising the fastest. Some stores have been spotted stocking butter as high as £9!
Throughout 2013 to 2020, gas prices were either stable or falling for much of it. However, prices increased towards the end of 2021.
Average heating oil prices increased from just over 20p a litre at the start of the pandemic to almost 60p a litre in mid-October 2021.
Due to the increased global demand for oil and gas coming out of lockdown, providers were unable to keep up with the high demand. Increased gas prices soon became increased electricity prices.
The average bill of electricity was £760 in 2021 compared to £450 in 2020, a 36% real increase.
The energy price cap also increased by 12% in October 2021 and 54% in April 2022. The April increase is the equivalent to £700 for ‘typical’ levels of dual fuel consumption paid by direct debit.
There is speculation that the cap could increase by a further 40-50% in October 2022, especially after the current war between Russia and Ukraine, resulting in higher wholesale prices.
The average cost of petrol has hit a record 191.53p a litre, while diesel is 199.03p with some places being as high as £2 a litre.
The reason for the spike is down to the cost of crude oil, used to produce petrol and diesel, which has increased. The price of crude oil collapsed during the pandemic as travel restrictions decreased demand.
That demand has now largely returned and been exacerbated due to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine as various countries reject Russian oil.
Here Are 3 Ways That Can Help You Earn You Money
Tax Rebate for Uniform Wearers
If you wear a uniform at work, that requires you to wash, repair or replace it yourself, you may be eligible to reclaim £100s of tax.
This applies whether it's just a branded T-shirt or a pilot, police or nurse’s uniform. Read our full uniform tax rebate guide.
Reclaim Packaged Bank Account Fees
If you've ever received a packaged bank account (which is when you pay a monthly fee for add-ons such as travel insurance) and you didn't ask for it, or couldn't use the benefits, there’s a chance you may be able to reclaim £100s or even £1,000s, as many of these accounts were mis-sold. Try our free reclaim packaged bank fees tool. For what is a package bank account, read our accompanying guide.
Working From Home Tax Relief
If your company has required you to work from home, then you may be eligible to claim back on increased utility costs such as heat or electricity used at that particular time. Find out more with our full WFH tax relief guide.
It’s definitely been a year of financial uncertainty so far, but hopefully these suggestions can alleviate some of your concerns.
For more money advice, visit our homepage.