Ireland’s Guide To Money And Living

Consumer watch

Consumer watch
New year, new reg

Around 45 per cent of Irish people intend on buying a car in the next 12 months, according to the latest Carzone Motoring Report, with 28% aiming to spend between €10,000 and €20,000. Only one in four people will use their savings to buy their new wheels, with finance options rising in popularity and availability.

The report also noted that the biggest cause of concern for Irish motorists is insurance, followed closely by the cost of fuel and motor tax. Half of those whose opinions were sought spend up to €250 per month on running costs, covering fuel, tax, insurance, repairs and servicing.

“The report finds that overall the outlook for the industry is positive with almost half of people questioned planning to buy a car in the next year. It was also interesting to see that newer models were some of the most searched for cars in the first 10 months of the year and that over 1 in 4 are willing to spend between €20,000 – €40,000. This higher price point is also reflected in our car searches with a number of premium marques such as BMW, Audi and Mercedes featuring in the top six,” said Ailish Tully, Brand Manager with Carzone. “The report also finds that the cost of insurance, tax and fuel remain a key concern for car buyers and just under half of consumers spread the cost of their tax and insurance rather than pay it off in one go. In particular, we see those under 35 opting for this payment method. While the impact of Brexit on the industry remains to be seen, the average consumer says it will not deter them from buying a car next year.”

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Healthy eating

Having a well-balanced diet is forcing families on low incomes to spend over a third of their weekly budgets on food. That’s according to a recent report from safefood, which found that a family of four (two parents and two children) will spend between €121 and €160 each week on a basket of healthy food. For a pensioner living on their own, the cost is around €64.

“Families on a low-income tend to eat less well, have poorer health outcomes with higher levels of obesity and its complications,” said Dr Cliodhna Foley-Nolan, Director, Human Health & Nutrition, safefood. In general, cheaper foods and takeaways are simply less nutritious. This presents a real challenge for parents when it comes to food shopping and planning for the week.”

Licence loophole

Finally, a loophole in relation to the TV licence could be closed in the future – people who don’t own a TV but watch RTE programmes online could be liable to pay, writes The Irish Times‘ Laura Slattery. According to Minister for Communications Denis Naughten, 2016 has seen a rise in people declaring that they don’t have a TV. “We’re looking at the legal definition of that, because a lot of those people use the content,” said Minister Naughten, as quoted in the article.

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When not writing about all things personal finance, You & Your Money’s editor Conor Forrest enjoys reading, football and getting lost in an ocean of Wikipedia articles.

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