49% of respondents to a survey on living costs in Guernsey said they found it difficult to meet living costs in the last 12 months.
Island Global Research (IGR) is a consultancy company who regularly conducts market research in the Crown Dependencies. It intermittently undertakes its own research and chose to publish its most recent findings to “give back to the Island Communities”.
From the 5 May to 4 June IGR surveyed 1,214 people in Guernsey, to understand the current cost of living in the island. It also published the same survey in Jersey and the Isle of Man.
Pictured: The main findings of the IGR’s survey.
Additionally, the survey found that 11% of respondents would be unable to afford an unexpected expense of £100 and 53% are very concerned about poverty and inequality in living standards.
Unsurprisingly, when asked for additional comment, respondents to the IGR survey said a lack of affordable housing was the biggest issue facing them.
One person said they couldn’t afford daily costs: “I am seen as a middle earner, but yet most months I have to decide to heat or eat,” they said.
“I live in a horrible run-down freezing states house and pay £1,300 a month to live in it. I have been told that I earn too much to live there so will have to move out at the end of the year.
“I can barely afford my rent now, how can I afford to move into private rental? I am looking to move to the UK as soon as I can, because I can no longer afford to live over here.”
Pictured: IGR has published its findings on its most recent survey.
A number of people who said they can “normally cover expenses” said that rents are disproportionate to incomes.
“Wages for those who do not work in the finance industry, but work in industries that support the island infrastructure (tourism, hospitality, care, teachers, utility workers, tradesmen) do not reflect the cost of living,” said one respondent.
“Everything seems to be rising except salaries,” said another.
Pictured: Respondents answered how they expected their financial position to change in the next 12 months.
“This cost of living survey is part of our equality series,” said the team at IGR.
“It sought to understand the impact of recent changes to the cost of living amongst islanders, and examine the extent to which there is a divide between those who can comfortably afford their living costs and those who are currently struggling to do so.
“In all three islands, respondents were often concerned by what they believe to be a widening of the gap between the richest and the poorest in our communities, with calls for more support to be made available to those who are financially vulnerable.
“There is concern about young people moving away, and indeed, one impact of rising costs reported by respondents is that they are looking to move away from our islands in order to afford a better standard of living. This appears to already be affecting some of those less able to afford their costs, while several ‘relatively comfortable’ respondents also indicated this is something they would be prepared to consider in the future.”
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