With only a few days to make up your mind, HANNAH WILLIAMS asks a cross-section of people what their most important deciding factors will be on May 6
The first-time voter
CAROLE Huntley, 22, volunteers at the Cancer Research shop in Chesham.
She said: "They all have good ideas individually. Why do they fight? They should work together.
"For me, being unemployed is the one thing I am worried about most because it affects everything. I don't see the point of raising taxes, as for me to go into work it wouldn't be worth it if a huge amount were to go on tax and national insurance.
"It would probably be better if I stayed on benefits.
"In terms of Iraq, I didn't think we should have gone in at all. It wasn't our fight - that was America's fight. I lost a lot of faith over that but I don't know if I had any faith in politics in the first place. I will be voting because I want to contribute to the country."
GARY Grant is owner of The Entertainer national chain of toy shops. The businessman, 52, from Latimer, employs 700 staff and runs 47 stores, with another 12 due to open this year.
He said: "We need a stable economy in which to trade. I understand there are issues we have to deal with and have to repay debt from 2008 and 2009.
"I need stability and confidence. If people feel they will have a job next year, confidence and the economy will improve. Increasing national insurance is a big problem; it is not easy to increase income. Rising taxes are out of our control so I will have to deal with things that I can control. Rather than redundancies, as people leave we will not replace some of them."
The same-party voter
KAMAL Dhanjal, 46, has always voted Labour. He is unemployed and volunteers in Chesham.
He said: "I have to go to building sites to ask for a job. These jobs don't get advertised in the Jobcentre or in the Evening Standard.
"I watched one of the (leaders') debates and the two were ganging up on the other one - Nick Clegg, and the money he was paid - but it went towards a member of staff.
"I thought that was disgusting. Labour are saying they are the ones who got us out of the recession but they are also the ones who put us in, and we don't know if (David) Cameron is going to do anything.
"I think it's going to be a hung parliament."
JOBLESS Victor Sheppard, 51, of Shelley Road, Chesham, is a former assistant manager of an off-licence.
He left his retail job after a heart attack, when he no longer felt comfortable working alone. The divorced father of two said: "I would like anyone but Gordon Brown.
"I hope for a sustainable working life and that things will pick up. You can be in a job one minute and the next it has shut down or something falters.
"I volunteer in the British Heart Foundation shop in Chesham to keep me work active, which has a scheme called Gift Aid, where 28p from the pound can be donated by a taxpayer.
"I don't agree they should tax a charity, I don't know what sort of percentage they do, but the way I see it is, one way or another, people donate clothes, whether designer or from Primark. That should be reviewed.
"I am of the view that if you earn £10 or £10,000 the percentage of tax you pay should be the same. If you tax the rich people too much they will leave the country and you will lose them and their money. It should be fair for all."
ADAM Szczypior, 35, is landlord of The Boot and Slipper, in Rickmansworth Road, Amersham.
Mr Szczypior, a married father, said: "I do not vote as I am not interested in politics and have a very demanding job.
"I think we (publicans) are the last worries on politicians' minds. The recession has affected the trade, there has been a big drop, and it's had a big impact on us.
"If people don't have the money, the first thing they will cut down on is going out or dining out. It's increasingly difficult for people to hand over money for a pint or meal.
"There was an interesting debate on increasing national insurance, which, in the end, will always be paid by the employer.
"I think if it were to increase significantly we probably wouldn't be able to give pay rises - labour being the biggest cost percentage to each business."