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Almost a fifth of people hit by rent or mortgage payment rises in last six months

Paloma Kubiak
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Paloma Kubiak

Nearly a fifth of UK adults have seen either their rent or mortgage payments rise over a six-month period, according to data from the financial watchdog.

The Financial Lives survey conducted by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) found that in the six months to January, 18% of the 5,286 respondents had seen their rent or mortgage costs increase. 

This was a recontact survey and followed its initial Financial Lives survey completed in May last year. The regulator said it wanted to understand the impact of the cost of living on people, as well as provide insight both for itself and interested parties. 

Within the cohort of respondents with a mortgage, 29% saw payment increases in six months and 34% of renters saw a rise. 

The FCA said this equated to 8% of mortgage holders faced with higher monthly payments and a tenth of renters. 

The survey revealed that 11% of people, equating to 5.6m UK adults, had missed at least three domestic bills or credit payments in the six-month period. 

The proportion of people who felt meeting these commitments was a heavy burden rose from 15% to 21%. According to the survey, three quarters of respondents said the burden had increased over the six-month period. 

Impact on well-being 

The survey revealed that financial burdens were impacting the mental wellbeing of respondents, with 54% admitting to feeling more anxious or stressed. 

Nearly a third (28%) said they had lost sleep, while almost a quarter revealed they suffered with their mental health. A further 11% said they avoided speaking to lenders or put off dealing with financial matters. 

Sheldon Mills, executive director of consumers and competition at the FCA, said: “Our research highlights the real impact the rising cost of living is having on people’s ability to keep up with their bills, although we are pleased to see that people have been accessing help and advice.