A FIFTH of Finnish households are not in a position to withstand any further increases in the cost of living, reports the Consumers’ Union of Finland.
The Consumers’ Union on Friday reported that financial difficulties are common particularly among single-parent households, with 31 per cent of them saying they have absolutely no financial cushion to cope with an increase in the cost of living without risking ending up in distress.
A quarter of one-person households similarly stated that they have no financial wiggle room.
“The Consumers’ Union is extremely worried about households that have no or only little financial wiggle room to respond to an increase in cost of living,” stated Juha Beurling-Pomoell, the secretary general of the Consumers’ Union.
“Unpaid electricity bills are already evident in the number of payment defaults,” he added, pointing to the latest statistics from Asiakastieto. “The number of payment defaults caused by unpaid electricity bills has already increased by 18 per cent this year, even thought the winter heating season is only now starting.”
Almost half (47%) of households, the survey found, cannot cope with an over 100-euro increase in their monthly cost of living. Nearly 15 per cent, by contrast, indicated that they could manage even if cost of living jumped by more than 500 euros a month.
The Consumers’ Union reminded that consumers who find themselves unable to afford the basic necessities should contact social security.
The survey was carried out between 6 and 21 September by Aula Research.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT