Employees who have been lucky enough to keep their jobs and work from home during the pandemic have found themselves hundreds of pounds better off per month, simply because they’re not leaving the house.
With working from home the new normal for 49% of working adults in the UK, one UK company has found that there’s an unexpected financial benefit for ex-commuters who have swapped their office desk for the dining room table.
UK based health and safety software specialists Protecting.co.uk have found on average that office workers were £500 better off a month by working at home, just by cutting down on travel, food, and clothing expenses.
“Working from home has the unexpected benefit of saving people a lot of money because they aren’t having to pay travel costs to go anywhere or splash out on expensive coffees and lunches,” says company spokesperson Mark Hall. “And now that staff have proved to employers that they can work efficiently at home, travelling into an office may seem like nothing more than an expensive commute.”
The Office for National Statistics has revealed that collectively the UK saved £157billion over the three months of lockdown, with the average person saving £495 a month.
Hall: “It’s no surprise that people are saving more when they’ve been stuck at home, there were no pubs, shops or restaurants open to spend in, and no need to fork out on clothing when we’ve all been lounging around in our comfy gear at home”.
Health and safety experts Protecting.co.uk asked people online if they have been able to save during the lockdown period, and the answers were as interesting as they were varied.
Sarah from Leeds said, “I’ve saved so much money by not going out for lunches with the girls in the office or going to staff drinks on a Friday, that I can afford a holiday when all of this is over. It’s definitely made me realise that I can save money if I cut out some of my habits.”
According to Aaron from St. Albans, “I started a help-to-buy ISA last summer, but now I’m not paying for the train I’ve managed to put enough money together for a house deposit – I was definitely not expecting to leave lockdown this well off, it’s like a pay rise without getting a pay rise!”
David from Fleet was less convinced, “Technically I’m £500 up a month from saving on rail and food expenses, but I’ve probably spent more than that on boredom buys online. Who knew I’d need a new pizza oven?”
“It definitely varies depending on individual circumstance, but working from home does have its financial benefits,” says Mark Hall. “For example, I stay in pyjama bottoms and just chuck on a shirt for any online meetings, so I’m saving myself money by only having to buy half an outfit!”
Protecting.co.uk have provided a free to use COVID 19 risk assessment that can be completed online or downloaded and adapted https://protecting.co.uk/covid-19-risk-assessment/