Households struggling to pay bills


Some 29 per cent of Irish households feel they might struggle to pay bills or buy food and other important items in the next 12 months, according to a new study.

The EU-wide survey, conducted by Eurobarometer, indicated 15 per cent of Irish households have run out of money to pay for essentials over the past year. This is just below the EU average of 17 per cent but well behind Romania, where a reported 43 per cent of households had such difficulties.

The survey was undertaken in 27 countries during May, with more than 25,000 people asked questions relating to their financial security and levels of poverty in their country.

The study showed there is continued pessimism about the labour market in Ireland, with few feeling confident about finding alternative employment if they were to be made redundant.

The overall perception of the jobs market has changed little in recent months, with 62 per cent suggesting it would be difficult to secure another position in the next 6 months if made redundant.

In addition, the study found that 35 per cent of Irish households said they are having difficulties paying healthcare for their families.

Nonetheless, while Irish citizens were seen to be downbeat about the jobs market, the percentage of households who feel pessimistic about their future has dropped.

The study showed there had been a decline from 48 per cent to 25 per cent of households who have a negative view of their financial future over the next 6 months.