Avoid a financial New Year hangover

Equifax launches The Equifax Budget Planner to help people take control of their finances

According to new data*, one in four British adults said they expected to take on new debt to pay for Christmas 2014. Whilst many may feel confident they can repay the debt, for some the Christmas shopping may not have been completely under control and the new year could bring the need for financial management into sharp focus.

To help consumers keep control of their budget, Equifax, the credit information provider, has added an interactive Equifax Budget Planner to the tools on its website – https://www.equifax.co.uk/newsroom/index.html

“Christmas can be an expensive time of year for many people with the result that in January the credit card bills and bank statements arrive and some individuals realise their festive spending went beyond what they could afford” explained Laura Barrett, Equifax Consumer Affairs. “The Equifax Budget Planner aims to take the stress out of staying in control of finances.

“By providing a quick and easy table for consumers to input all their household income and outgoings, the Equifax Budget Planner gives people a ready-made tool for getting their finances in order to start the New Year on a positive note.”

The Equifax Budget Planner is divided into categories including all forms of income from full time salary and any benefits to part-time jobs. Outgoings are divided into sections, including household expenses, utilities, health, transport and entertainment, helping consumers think about every aspect of their spending. Importantly, outgoings also includes a section for debt payments, such as loans and credit cards. Once everything is filled in, the planner creates an expenses total, which is subtracted from income to create a ‘Net Income’.

“It’s vital that people gain a clear picture of how much money they have and make sure they’re not spending more than they earn, especially if they want to apply for a mortgage or make a big purchase, such as a car, later in the year” added Laura Barrett. “And we believe the Equifax Budget Planner is a simple way to take stock and help people see what changes they can make, if they need to spend less.“

“The New Year is the perfect time to assess your financial health and put a plan in place to reduce any debts and make your money go further. With a little planning, we’re hoping consumers will put themselves in good financial shape for Christmas 2015.”

The Equifax Budget Planner can be accessed for free from the Equifax website - https://www.equifax.co.uk/newsroom/index.html. To help assess what financial commitments an individual has it may also help to review the information on their credit report.

The Equifax Credit Report is accessible for 30 days free simply by logging onto www.equifax.co.uk/Products/credit/credit-report.html. If customers do not cancel before the end of the 30 Day Free Trial, the service will continue at £9.95 per month, giving them unlimited online access to their credit information and weekly alerts on any changes to their credit file. It also includes an online dispute facility to help them correct any errors on their credit file simply and quickly.

*R3 survey conducted by ComRes http://www.ccrmagazine.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12488&Itemid=35

ENDS

For further press information, please contact: Clare Watson, Cecile Stearn, Parm Heer or Wendy Harrison at HSL on 020 8977 9132 / Fax: 020 8977 5200 or email: equifaxbtocteam@harrisonsadler.com

About Equifax

Equifax is a global leader in consumer, commercial and workforce information solutions that provide businesses of all sizes and consumers with insight and information they can trust. Equifax organizes and assimilates data on more than 600 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide. The company’s significant investments in differentiated data, its expertise in advanced analytics to explore and develop new multi-source data solutions, and its leading-edge proprietary technology enable it to create and deliver unparalleled customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 19 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. In 2013, Equifax was named a Bloomberg BusinessWeek Top 50 company, was #3 in Fortune's Most Admired list in its category, and was named to InfoWeek 500 as well as the FinTech 100. For more information, please visit www.equifax.com.

Equifax Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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