December is an expensive month for many of us as we prepare for Christmas with presents and all the trimmings that come with the holiday, however there are some changes that could put money back in your pocket this month.

Cost of living payments, changes to many forms of benefits, and more sweeping financial changes are all due in December.

Many could see money coming your way, while others could force us to tighten the purse strings further.

These are some of the major changes this month that will impact everyone in the UK, though not everyone will be eligible for each section.

Universal Credit and benefits Christmas bonuses

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) confirmed that millions in receipt of Universal Credit and other benefits would receive a Christmas bonus this month.

While that bonus comes to just £10, it is always nice to receive a small boost.

The money will be paid into accounts, tax-free, between December 5 and December 11.

People who receive the following benefits are eligible for the Christmas bonus:

  • Armed Forces Independence Payment
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Child Disability Payment
  • Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Incapacity Benefit at the long-term rate
  • Industrial Death Benefit
  • Mobility Supplement
  • Pension Credit - the guarantee element
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • State Pension
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Unemployability Supplement or Allowance
  • War Disablement Pension at State Pension age
  • War Widow’s Pension
  • Widowed Mother’s Allowance
  • Widowed Parent’s Allowance
  • Widow’s Pension

New consumer price inflation figures

The Office for National Statistics will publish the rate of inflation for November on December 14.

Last month saw inflation in the UK hit its highest rates since 1982.

As inflation rises so does the price of everyday items including food essentials, fuel and energy bills.

Interest rates could rise

Following the unveiling of the latest inflation figures, the Bank of England could decide to raise interest rates on December 15.

It is the best tool that the Bank of England has to steer inflation back to its 2% target.

But the decisions will also have major impacts on people’s finances, not least those with mortgages who will need to start paying more for their home loans.