According to a study, these monthly fixed costs account for up to 80% of the income of the poorest households.
Electricity, water, phone bills, rent or mortgage, insurance or fuel… These expenses, known as “constraints,” are constantly increasing in the household budget. They have thus increased by 36 euros per month in one year, according to the national index of restricted spending, published every year by the comparison portal lesfurets.com in collaboration with CSA Research.
These restricted expenses are defined as such by INSEE “owed by private households by contract or subscription”. According to lesfurets.com, they reach an average of 1095 euros per month. A significant weight: This amount accounts for just over a third of the average household net income, but there are significant differences. The detail of the index shows that the limited expenses thus represent up to 80% of the monthly budget of the most modest French, ie those who earn less than 900 euros per month. For the highest earners, the share is reduced to 17%.
In reality, the amount of these expenses that everyone has to make to live does not differ much from whether one earns less than 1000 euros a month or more than 10,000 euros. The telephone package, for example, or fuel have the same or almost the same price level for all French people. The study of the website lesfurets.com thus shows that the limited expenses amount to 1017 euros per month for the poorest population groups versus 1209 euros for high income groups, a difference of less than 20%. On the other hand, their weight logically varies, since the same sum does not represent the same part of a budget of 1500 euros or another of 3000 euros.
The differences are also attributed to age. While 18 to 24-year-olds have to pay around 51% of their income, i.e. an amount of EUR 1,076 per month, the proportion of over 65-year-olds is 26%, who spend EUR 841 per month. Housing-related spending largely explains such a gap, as seniors are full owners for many.
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63 euros per month for leisure activities only
Geographically, too, the rifts diverge further. The Ile-de-France remains the master of limited expenses: its residents have to pay monthly fixed expenses of 1188 euros, inflated by expenses related to real estate, which average 802 euros compared to 675 euros at the national level. Not far from the residents of the capital region, the Pays de la Loire and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté have to bear limited expenses of 1183 euros and 1165 euros respectively. Since the average net income is lower in these areas, the share of committed expenditure in the household budget is a few points higher.
The study conducted by CSA Research also focused on the “Leisure Subscriptions”, but without including them in the bound editions. These predetermined expenses for cinema, music or the gym average 41 euros per month and up to 63 euros for 18 to 24 year olds. The study also finds that a third of French people – 34% – say they cannot do without their subscriptions to video streaming platforms. So many expenses that weigh on household budget decisions.
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