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Sask. shoppers changing their habits as cost of living rises


A new survey focused on the finances of prairie folks shows people are struggling with inflation and the rising cost of living.

A June MNP survey of 2,000 Canadians found nearly half of Saskatchewan and Manitoba residents regret the amount of debt they’ve taken on.

Michelle Scheller, a licensed insolvency trustee with MNP, said people initially had the ability to take on more debt, and didn’t anticipate an increase.

“That monthly payment, with whatever that interest rate was, did fit into their budget and they could make ends meet each month. Now with the increase, it's making it quite impossible to continue to do that,” Scheller said in an interview with CTV News.

Two-thirds of the people surveyed said their weekly spending on essentials has increased by at least $100. Scheller said some people may need to curb their spending on entertainment and other non-essentials.

“I think it’s taking a good look at your budget, and determining what can be cut out to cover some of these other costs,” she said.

Nearly half of the people surveyed are $200 dollars away or less from not being able to meet their financial obligations.

“The cost of living and the increase in the interest rates has already put pressure on a lot of consumers, and we've been seeing it get tighter and tighter as these increases continue,” she said.

About three in five surveyed said they are feeling the effects of increasing interest rates, and are concerned about their ability to pay debts as interest continues to rise. For a person who is struggling with debt, Scheller recommends seeking financial advice through their bank.

“If they hit a wall and can’t get help that way, then I think it’s really good to get professional advice sooner than later,” she said.

CTV News discussed inflation with shoppers outside of a department store in Prince Albert.

“It definitely effects how we shop and how much we spend, and the things that we do, especially with kids,” Kelsey Price said.

“You just have to buy your necessities,” Angie Burns said “That’s basically it. It’s hard,” she added.

“I’m usually reassessing my budget, but I have noticed an increase over the last couple of years in my day-to-day expenses for living,” Blaine Schultz said. Top Stories

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