Will you have to cut down in 2013 to afford your mortgage?

Nearly one third of UK homeowners think they'll have to spend less in certain areas in 2013 so that they can afford their mortgage repayments.

This is according to Legal & General's latest MortgageMood survey.

The top three things people thought they might have to cut down on were:
  • Socialising and hobbies (82%)
  • Clothes (78%)
  • Groceries (68%)

People in Wales (46%) and North West England (43%) felt the most need to cut back, while homeowners in East Anglia (23%) and the West Midlands (20%) were the least worried.

Despite the worries among existing homeowners, would-be first-time buyers seemed relatively optimistic. Nearly half (44%) are hoping to have enough saved up for a deposit in the first six months of 2013 - while 14% are making similar plans for the second half of the year. 13% are going to start saving up for a deposit this year.

A quarter of would-be homeowners are planning to focus on repaying their debts this year, so that they'll be able to start saving for a deposit next year.

The managing director of the Legal & General Mortgage Club, Ben Thompson, said: "Ensuring that homeowners budget appropriately to meet the needs of mortgage repayments is very sensible although the fact that so many intend to cut back on groceries and clothing shows that austerity is still biting up and down the country."

An expert from debt management company Gregory Pennington commented: "Tightening your budget is a good idea if you think it can free up the money you need to put towards your mortgage.

"If your money problems are more serious, however, it's important to seek professional help. A debt adviser could help you tackle your unsecured debts - like credit cards, overdrafts and personal loans - helping you free up more money in your budget to help with your mortgage."

Helen Gradwell

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