Joseph Rowntree Foundation report: A Minimum Income Standard for the UK 2008-2018

Families need a third more income to make ends meet, and pensioners need twice as much, compared to 2008.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation has published a 2018 update of the Minimum Income Standard (MIS) for the UK and a report on continuity and change in household budgets and living standards over the last ten years.

The research looks across household budgets including housing, fuel costs, food, clothing, household goods, childcare and social and cultural participation.

Key points include:

  • The Minimum Income Standard (MIS) is slightly above 70% of median income for working-age households, but lower for pensioners
  • Full-time earnings on the minimum wage are not enough to reach a minimum income
  • Lone parents working full-time on the National Living Wage typically fall £70 a week short of a MIS budget. They have been hit by tax credit cuts, only very
    partially offset by improved wages.
  • Transport costs have risen from around 10% to nearly 20% of minimum household budgets
  • The scarcity of social housing has caused working-age adults without children to specify privately rented housing as the realistic minimum acceptable available option

The report recommends that the Government increases the Work Allowance under Universal Credit, which could help three million low-income families to keep more of their earnings and improve their standard of living.

The JRF have updated their minimum income standard calculator.

Read the press release.

Read more about the report or download the report in full (pdf).