The How I Manage My Money series aims to find out how people in the UK are spending, saving and investing to achieve their costs and reach their goals.
This week we’re talking to Kate Annetts, 38, who lives in Hove and earns £ 1,731 a month.
Universal Credit £ 1,491; PIP £ 240; Ad Hoc Revenue £ 9.50p / h
total: £ 1,731
Rent £ 750; Council Tax £ 103; Utilities £ 35; Broadband / Landline £ 18.99; Mobile Phone £ 35; Content / Other Insurance £ 7.92; Water £ 25; Grocery £ 200; Transportation £ 30; Gifts £ 20; With streaming service
Subscription £ 28.97; Gym £ 22; Clothing £ 50; Debt Repayment £ 100; Osteopathic Fee £ 42
total: £ 1,467.88
I grew up in a small village near Salisbury. I went to Southampton University to study creative writing and lived in Hove in Sussex for the last 15 years. After graduating from college, I took up several managerial positions and at the age of 22 I noticed that my legs became unstable. It took me several years before I was finally diagnosed with Friedreich’s ataxia in 2012.
About 10,000 people in the UK are in this state-it’s a progressive one that affects your muscles and balance. Eventually he became a wheelchair user and is now traveling with mobility frames and scooters.
The first few years after I was diagnosed were tough and very lonely. But since then, I’ve discovered on Instagram that there is a large community of people who are chronically ill. It didn’t make me feel lonely. I worked full time until 2017, which is too difficult.
In May 2019, I was considered disabled by the Department for Work and Pensions and benefits now make up the majority of my income. I receive £ 1,491 per month for Universal Credit and £ 240 per month for Independent Living Security for Persons with Disabilities (PIP). I also occasionally do administrative work for local charities. This is £ 9.50 per hour.
I’m worried about how to manage when the temporary rise in Universal Credit is over. In addition to my monthly expenses, there always seems to be something I have to pay. I’m currently paying a £ 100 loan a month after spending £ 900 on a mobility scooter in June.
My income is reduced by about £ 80 a month, so I need to reduce it. I’m already sticking to a tight budget, so I’ll need to reduce social activity and subscriptions. I’m not sure if there is a charity I can support, but I’m getting advice from a local charity in Brighton.
Budget is really important to me. When it comes to groceries, I try to keep my budget of £ 200 a month by preparing meals from scratch.
Like many, I have found the various blockades of the last 18 months to be very difficult. Immediately after the first blockade was announced in March 2020, I temporarily moved with my mother.
She lives in Salisbury with my brother and it’s nice that we could support each other. I stayed for 3 months before returning to June.
Since then, I have been living alone again. That’s great because I’m only a few blocks away from the beach. And since I received the mobility scooter three months ago, I’ve been able to move around the city much easier.
My future priority is to improve my health and fitness in the short term. Also, when Universal Credit goes down next month, we’ll take a closer look at our monthly budget.
I will also return to creative writing. I haven’t done much since college, but I think it’s important to spend more time at home more productively. I think there is a lack of work that suits my situation, so ideally I would like to make use of my experience of living with a disability.
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