A new study from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has concluded that an average family needs an income of £36,800 per annum in order to have a socially acceptable standard of living.
This means that a couple with two children need to earn one third more than they did in 2008 in order to live within social norms.
The higher costs have come about as a result of rising childcare and transport expenditure, combined with cuts to state benefits.
In a separate study, a minimum income standard was determined by looking at the cost of eating a balanced diet, running a car and heating a home.
According to the study by Loughborough University, a couple with two children need to earn a minimum of £18,400 a year to meet this minimum income standard.
Single people need to earn £16,400 a year and a single parent with one child needs to earn at least £23,900 a year.
An important aspect of Financial Planning is to determine your own socially acceptable standard of living, and in some cases your own minimum income standard.
Understanding the income you will need to support your chosen lifestyle, both during your working life and in retirement, is an important first step in understanding the financial resources (income and capital) you will require.
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