Bills and Debt

Keeping on top of your money and dealing with money problems

Here is a 2 page Money Help in Cambridgeshire Checklist that you can use to help yourself or others.

Services near me

Get more money in

Always keep a check that you are getting in all of the money that you possibly can.


A regular benefits check will make sure you are getting all the help you are entitled to – whether you are in work or out of work

Turn 2 us provides an easy to use benefits check.


Can you get grants or extra help with your bills?

Grants are money given to people facing severe hardship.

There are lots of different types of grants but they are usually for essential or important needs when you cannot afford to pay for yourself. They are not guaranteed and an application has to be made – usually by a worker who knows you and can make the request on your behalf.

  • Grants search on CHARIS – particularly help with household bills and items
  • Local or Community Assistance scheme- these are grants for people under exceptional pressure who have no savings and are on means tested benefits or low income. How to apply and what is available depends on where you live:
  • Local guide to grants for individuals in need
  • Turn 2 Us also has a grants search facility although this tends to give a lot  of results so we recommend asking a worker

Are you getting the best deals?

Always seeking the best deals for yourself is a useful habit and saves a lot.

Buying and selling online – comparing prices online and between shops really makes  a  difference. Plus if you have unwanted goods or clothes or things to sell there are lots of websites that offer free listings. if you are not online at home look at the service directory for help locally

Save money on heating, cooking and lighting bills – if you have not checked your energy (electricity and gas) for the best deals in the last year do it immediately – prices are always changing and swapping suppliers is much easier these days.

Save money on your water bills – make sure you are on the right tariff and get a free home visit to find out how to save more money on water bills

Spend less on shopping – planning your meals ahead, using up leftovers, shopping for discounted food, using vouchers, checking out  free and recycled stuff

Keeping track of your spending with a spending diary or box of receipts will help you know how well you are doing and give you ideas of where more savings may be possible


If you are at work (or have been)

Things to think about in relation to earned income

  • Know your payslip and make sure your hours, pay rate are correct on each one
  • Check your tax code is correct and check if there is any tax you can claim back
  • Make sure you are getting all the help with childcare and getting into work that you are entitled to.
  • If you want to find or change jobs there is lots of free and independent, friendly help – see our service directory

If you have a home

Think about where you live and who lives with you and if there any money saving changes you can make.

  • Can you take in a lodger? (always check with your landlord first if you are in rented accommodation)
  • If you are in housing that is too big for you needs, can you move to a smaller property to avoid paying the “bedroom tax”? Use this handy calculator to see if your home is considered too large for you
  • Are there other adults living with you? How can they contribute towards the bills? Find out about non dependant deductions PLUS always tell your landlord  / council  who is living with you if you rent – especially if you are claiming benefits
  • If you are struggling to cover your rent and essential bills you may be able to get temporary help through a discretionary housing payment

Money makeover

For lots more ideas on increasing your money download our handy ‘Money Makeover’ tool