Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

The MoneySaving Forum: join to chat & swap tips with other MoneySavers. Learn how in the Forum Introduction Guide

MSE Leaders' Debate 2017

MSE Leaders' Debate 2017

Get Our Free Money Tips Email!

For all the latest deals, guides and loopholes - join the 12m who get it. Don't miss out

It's the biggest consumer decision most will make in 2017. Voting to choose who should govern has a big impact on the money in your pocket, and everyone else's too – never mind the fact it can change the flavour of the society we live in. It's important to factor everything in, yet consumer issues are not usually widely covered.

To redress that, each general election we hold a leaders' debate, inviting all major party leaders to answer questions within our MoneySaving area.

Remember, they all had the same questions – what they've chosen not to answer can be important too...

Leaders' Debate: The videos

Before we get into detailed answers we asked all party leaders to send a 90-second-ish video to tell us what one key message they would highlight for consumers. Here they are…

Leaders' Debate: Your questions

The questions were suggested by MoneySavers in our forum and on social media then voted on in an MSE poll, plus we've added a couple. We list all the parties in order of the number of their seats at the time Parliament was dissolved. We've left their answers as they've submitted them.

  • AFFORDABLE HOUSING: "How will you address the lack of affordable homes and/or help first-time buyers? What will you do to protect leaseholders from property developers, which sell freeholds to third parties who then ramp up ground rents?"

  • BENEFITS: "What plans do you have for the benefits system? What protections will you put in place to prevent financial hardship as people are moved onto universal credit? Should people earn more working than on benefits – if so, how would you ensure this? Will you improve the highly criticised back-to-work assessments for disability benefits, specifically personal independence payments and employment and support allowance?"

  • BREXIT CONSUMER RIGHTS: "This has been very much ignored in Brexit discussions. How will you guarantee, safeguard or improve our consumer rights as we exit the EU? Will your Government form a cross-department consumer-focused working group to navigate Brexit?"

  • ENERGY PRICES: "66% of people are stuck on the most expensive tariffs – what will you do to get people on cheaper deals? Do you think all prices should be regulated? When did you last switch your energy tariff and how?"

  • FINANCIAL EDUCATION FOR YOUNG PEOPLE: "It's been on the national curriculum in senior schools in England since 2015 (earlier elsewhere). Yet limited resources have been committed, and teachers haven't been trained. What will you do to make it work? How will you help to ensure schools that don't follow the curriculum teach this subject?"

  • INCOME TAX: "What will happen to tax rates and thresholds under your Government? Would you change the way and the rates the self-employed are taxed?"

  • MENTAL HEALTH AND DEBT: "With over 50% of those in debt crisis having mental health issues, what will you do to help improve people's chances? What plans do you have to break this devastating link?"

  • MORTGAGE PRISONERS: "What will you do to help those stuck on high-rate mortgages, rejected from cheaper deals as they 'can't afford' them, due to affordability rules that aren't fit for purpose? Will you allow rent repayments to be used as a means of proving affordability when applying for a first mortgage?"

  • RENTING: "What will you do to help those who are renting – and to make renting more attainable? How will you address the terrible fees, costs and services some face when renting privately?"

  • SAVINGS: "Interest rates are at historic lows. How will you ensure savers start seeing a decent return on their nest egg?"

  • SOCIAL CARE: "How do you plan to make social care available and affordable to everyone? Will you change the allowance for full-time carers from its current £62.70 a week – how much to?"

  • THE STATE PENSION: "What will you do to help the WASPI women born in the 1950s suffering hardship as their state pension ages were changed without enough notice? Will you retain or scrap the pension 'triple–lock' guarantee? Do you have any plans to change the state pension age?"

  • STUDENT LOANS: "What are your plans for future student finance? How will you help those at university who don't get enough to live on? Will you be upfront with parents about what you expect them to contribute? Will you reverse the retrospective hike on student costs for those who started from 2012 to 2016 and unfreeze the £21,000 repayment threshold?"

  • Leaders' Debate: Replies by party

    If you'd rather read replies a different way, in this section we've copied the answers from the questions above and sectioned them so you can read each party's views in one go.

    Conservatives – Theresa May

    Labour – Jeremy Corbyn

    Scottish National Party – Nicola Sturgeon

    Liberal Democrats – Tim Farron

    Plaid Cymru – Leanne Wood

    Green Party – Jonathan Bartley

    UKIP – Paul Nuttall

Get Our Free Money Tips Email!

For all the latest deals, guides and loopholes - join the 12m who get it. Don't miss out