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Managing your money


Learning to budget and manage your money can help you save money and stay on top of your bills, this is even more important with the rising cost of living. Below are some general tips to help you manage your money better.

For local support and information around Cost of Living, please check your local council website.

For more information on Government Cost of Living Help visit: Help for Households

Cost of Living Payments for 2023/24

The government is going to be helping eligible low-income households with their cost of living with a further payment of £900 across 2023 and 2024. This was announced as part of the Budget on 17th November.

This will be paid in three installments of £301, £300, and £299 (they are each slightly different values so that you can easily keep track of them) spread over the course of the next year to ensure a consistent support offering. There will also be one-off disability and pensioner cost of living payments during this time.

The exact payment schedule will be announced closer to the time, but the proposed schedule is as follows:

  • £301 – First Cost of Living Payment – during Spring 2023
  • £150 – Disability Cost of Living Payment – during Summer 2023
  • £300 – Second Cost of Living Payment – during Autumn 2023
  • £300 – Pensioner Cost of Living Payment – during Winter 2023/4
  • £299 – Third Cost of Living Payment – during Spring 2024

If you are eligible for the payment, you do not need to do anything – payments will be automatic.

We will keep an eye on further updates on this – in the meantime, for more information, please visit GOV.UK.


Money MOT

Just like a car needs to be checked annually to confirm everything is in working order, it is also necessary to check your finances to make sure you’re not missing out on any additional income. Cost of living has hit us all and if you are worried about money we’re here to help. Speak to a member of our Financial Resilience Team for advice budgeting, claiming welfare benefits, energy support, and generally getting your finances in order. To book your Money MOT please contact the team by email: moneymatters@greatplaces.org.uk.


Budgeting involves keeping track of how much money you receive and how much you are spending.

It can help you prioritise important things and cut back on others. It also helps you plan for the future. A good budget plan can stop you from getting into debt.

Please visit MoneyHelper for more information on budgeting.

Moneyhelper website

Get a Bank Account

Access to a bank account is important, especially if you are on benefits. A bank account makes it much easier to manage your money. You’ll be able to spend money using a debit card instead of carrying cash around.

You can also set up Direct Debits so bills are paid automatically.

Money Advice Service website

Understanding debt

Dealing with money issues can be a stressful time. You are not alone in feeling this way. It is reported that over eight million people in the UK have experienced financial difficulties. We know that this can be tough to deal with and can leave you feeling overwhelmed. There are organisations that could help and support you.

As a starting point, please visit MoneyHelper for more information on how to deal with debt.

Stepchange Visit their website for online advice at www.stepchange.org/start, or call them on 0113 138 1111 Mon-Fri 8am-8pm, Sat 8am-4pm.

National Debt Line Visit www.nationaldebtline.org or phone 0800 808 4000. The National Debtline contact centre is open Monday – Friday from 9am until 8pm, and Saturday 9.30am – 1pm.

Citizen’s Advice Citizens Advice, through their network of independent charities, offers confidential advice online, over the phone, and in person, for free. To find your local Citizens Advice please go their website at www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Welfare benefits

There are different types of benefits available to families and carers as well as disability benefits, tax credits, job seekers and low income benefits to name just a few.

Benefits on Gov.uk

Credit Unions

Need a loan? Credit Unions can be a good source of affordable and local lending. They also offer current accounts. You can usually apply for these, even if you have had money problems in the past.

If you would like to know more their services, contact our dedicated team by email: moneymatters@greatplaces.org.uk or search for a Credit Union in your area.

Discretionary Housing Payments

DHP is designed to provide tenants with additional financial help towards their housing costs. This means it can be paid in addition to any benefits, including any Housing Benefit/Universal Credit that the tenant receives.

DHP is given to cover rent liability and could include someone in a shared ownership property. It can also be given to cover other types of housing costs such as removals. contact your local council for information on how to apply

Find your local council

Household Support Fund

On 30 September 2021, the government announced that vulnerable households across the country will be able to access a new £500 million support fund to help them with essentials over the winter. This scheme has been extended and should primarily be given to household who need  help with food and energy bill costs – although it is at the local council’s discretion. It can be used to for help with housing costs if it is an emergency situation and other help (e.g. DHPs) cannot cover it. The support that’s available varies between councils, so you’ll need to check with your local council what help is available in the region you live in.

Find your local council

Foodbank Access

Are you or your family having to go without food? Are you cutting back on the essentials because you’re struggling to afford them? No one should have to go without the basics and we want to make sure our customers aren’t going hungry in these challenging times. Help is available.

Our Financial Resilience Team work with a range of partner organisations (across all our regions) that operate food banks or food pantries. These food banks or food pantries stock everyday essentials and your Neighbourhood Services Manager can refer you to a service if you need support. Please contact your Neighbourhood Services Manager to discuss what options may be available to you.

Council Tax Support

Council Tax Support is help for people who have little or no income and need financial assistance in order to meet their Council Tax liability. Those classed as pension age may be awarded a maximum of 100% discount from their Council Tax, dependent upon their circumstances. Contact your local council for support.

Find your local council

Low cost broadband

BT Home Essentials provides low cost broadband and phone plans for customers on certain welfare benefits

BT Home Essentials

Home Insurance

Great Places insure the structure of your home, but our cover doesn’t include what’s inside it.

As a Great Places customer, you can apply for home contents insurance from as little as £2.99 a fortnight

Get Contents Insurance

Energy support

If you are looking for support with your energy bills you can find further information on our website:

Water bills

United Utilities customers

You can apply for a grant to cover current charges and any arrears “” visit United Utilities Trust Fund.

United Utilities also run a scheme called WaterSure that gives help to customers who use large amounts of water for essential purposes.

Yorkshire Water customers

Yorkshire Water Community Trust helps customers who are in genuine need and/or arrears. Visit Yorkshirewater.com to see if you might be eligible for this support.

Severn Trent customers

Severn Trent could help you save money on your water bills. Find out more and check if you might be eligible for support.

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