The cost of basic goods and services needed by the average two-child household in the UK has risen by £400 a month, claims an analysis that suggests families are experiencing faster inflation than official figures indicate.
According to the research from Loughborough University, costs for families with two children have risen by an annual rate of 13 percent, faster than the 9 percent rate of inflation found in official statistics, which in itself is a 40-year high.
UK households are grappling with a cost-of-living crisis, as prices rise significantly faster than wages, cutting spending power.
Food prices have increased by 9.3 percent over the past year, while childcare costs are up 6.7 percent. The researchers found that families are spending about an extra £120 per month on energy, £90 more on transport including petrol, and £65 on childcare.
Peter Matejic, a deputy director at the charity Joseph Rowntree Foundation, stated that families are rationing showers once a week, giving up milk in their tea and eating cold meals to avoid using the oven to keep costs down.
“Rising prices are affecting all of us but for the UK’s poorest families there is no escape from soaring costs because so much of their income goes into the basics that everyone needs to take part in society,” The Guardian quoted Matejic as saying.
The charity has called for the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, to increase benefit payments in line with inflation so that families can pay for their basic needs.