A Minimum Income Standard for the UK

The Minimum Income Standard (MIS) for the UK has been established via thorough research and continually reviewing and updating the data set to provide accurate insights.

MIS Research

MIS is based on detailed research with groups of members of the public specifying what items need to be included in a minimum household budget. The groups are informed by expert knowledge where needed, for example on nutritional standards. The results show how much households need in a weekly budget and how much they need to earn in order to achieve this disposable income. Since the first budgets were calculated in 2008, MIS reports have been produced annually.

MIS updating

Since 2008, budgets have been updated annually in July, taking account of inflation and changes in the tax and benefit system. In addition, every two years, new research considers whether the basket of items used to calculate the budgets needs revision in light of changes in society. This involves a light-touch 'review' of existing budgets, asking groups of members of the public if the lists need to change. But every four years for each household type, we 'rebase' the calculations by asking the groups to construct new budgets from a blank sheet. Rebases alternate between budgets for families with children, in 2012, 2016 and 2020, and budgets for working-age and pensioner household without children, in 2014, 2018 and 2022. The results of these rebases can be found in the annual MIS reports.