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'I may still have to move back in with my parents' – BBC


Ellie Monajemi, 27, has a good job earning more than £30,000 per year, but she says the cost of living crisis means she is struggling to make ends meet.
The rise in her energy and food bills mean she does not know if she and her partner will be able to afford to stay in the one bedroom flat they rent.
Ellie had hoped Chancellor Jeremy Hunt would announce more help for first-time buyers at the Budget, but she was disappointed.
Other young people told the BBC how the measures announced in the Budget like childcare and energy bill help would impact them.
Ellie works in public health in Somerset where she rents a one-bedroom flat with her partner.
They are finding it difficult to cover all of the bills and they want to be able to save for a property deposit.
"It's been really difficult with energy bills going up, and food is really expensive," she says.
"We can't afford to live here any more – it feels like you're backed into a corner."
Despite support with energy bills being extended for three months in England, Wales and Scotland, Ellie says "it's still going to be a struggle".
"It still means I could be moving home," she says. "If we are already struggling, in debt because everything is so expensive, it's not going to be better. It's not like the wages are going up."
She said the cost of living crisis has "already bled us all dry", and added that the Budget doesn't really help young people.
Ellie has been the sole earner until recently. With monthly rent at £675, plus energy, fuel, food and other bills, they are struggling to balance the books.
Ellie said getting a good education and job "feels a bit pointless in a way," adding: "It feels like we're a cog in a machine that's failing."
She says "one good thing" to come out of the Budget was the government freezing fuel duty as she spends about £150 a month filling up her car.
Emily, 30, works as a mental health professional in Buckinghamshire, and has been on maternity leave looking after her eight-month-old son Michael.
But she has given up her job as childcare costs are so high she would have effectively been paying to go to work, she says.
She found it would cost £400 per month locally for two days of childcare, even with child tax credits.
Working two days a week would not have covered that bill, let alone anything else.
"You shouldn't be made to struggle so much just for having a baby," she says.
Mr Hunt announced in the Budget that childcare support in England would be extended to one and two-year-olds, and the amount people can claim on Universal Credit would rise from £646 per month to £951 per child.
Emily says she is "happy" that might help other people, but that "it doesn't apply to me as such" because the policy will be introduced in stages, with 30 hours free childcare for all only starting in September 2025.
Emily's lease runs out on her two-bedroom rental property at the end of the month and she has had to make arrangements to move in with a family member with her baby.
Her partner will move in with his brother and sleep on the floor, while her cats will go to live with her mother.
Her partner is struggling to find work and everywhere they've seen to rent in the area is too expensive.
She says Octopus Energy has been really helpful in arranging a payment plan, and further government support will help. But she says her main concern is food bills.
Hamlet Shanley says the only thing that helped him in the Budget was the government extending energy bill support for a further three months.
Mr Shanley, from Portsmouth, says: "That means my bills aren't going up, but they aren't coming down either."
"It's still going to be unaffordable for a lot of people, and the £400 winter fuel payment is coming to an end.
"I'm glad that they are bringing the price of energy on prepayment meters in line with direct debits because my mum is on a prepayment meter," he adds.
Mr Shanley and his partner rent at the moment but would like to be able to buy their own home.
"Our one-bed rental is £850 each month and between energy, utilities, food and transport we find ourselves with virtually nothing left to save each month," he says.
But he feels the Budget was more "about what wasn't said rather than what was".
For him the Budget was "a lot of measures designed to stem the current crisis and prevent it from getting worse rather than making things any better."
He adds that the expansion of free childcare will be welcomed by some of his friends, and he feels investment in nuclear energy was "a step in the right direction to improving our energy security".
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