London, UK, 21 September 2016: More than half (51%) of Brits feel they would be happier if they had better control of their finances, and a quarter (26%) say their finances are out of control. A new study, commissioned by Experian, reveals a range of insights into the nation’s habits and attitudes to money and the role money plays in our lives.
Both men (29%) and women (27%) in Britain find it hard to understand how to manage their money and 51% say they would be happier if they could get a better grasp of their finances. This strongly suggests there are millions of adults in Britain who know sorting out their money situation is a priority, but struggle to actually make it happen.
The research was commissioned to coincide with Experian launching the nation’s most trusted credit score for free, for everyone, forever.
Commenting on the research, Experian’s Clive Lawson said: “We want to help people overcome their money worries and take the first step to get back in control. So we are offering the Experian Credit Score free to everyone, forever, as part of a credit comparison tool to help people save money quickly and easily, called CreditMatcher.”
Financial literacy improves with age
More than two thirds (68%) of 16-24 year olds agreed they would be happier if they could get a better grasp of their finances. Positively however the research highlights how people get more confident with money and financial control, the older they get. Whilst nearly half (46%) of 16-24 year olds said they find it hard to manage their money, yet the percentage decreases steadily the older people get:
41% of 25-34 year-olds
31% of 35-44 year-olds
22% of 45-54 year-olds
11% of over 55-year-olds
“Younger people are unintentionally missing out on the benefits of good money management. My question is – why wait to save money? It’s never too early to get a grip on your finances. The average household could save up to £400 by switching to a zero interest credit card1. The beauty of CreditMatcher is that it shows you credit cards and loans that you are more likely to be accepted for, as the deals are personal to you,” Clive Lawson continued. “The great thing about CreditMatcher with the free Experian Credit Score, is that it gives people a tool to take back control by seeing where they stand and how they can make a positive change.”
The older we become, the less importance we attach to money
A startling 29% of Brits agreed with the statement “Money is the most important thing in my life” although there is a clear gender and age divide.
The older people get, the less importance they attach to money. Only 17% of over-55s consider money to be the most important thing in life compared to 43% of 16-24 year olds. The results for other age ranges were:
45-54 year olds - 25%
35-44 year olds – 32%
25-34 year olds – 38 %
Over one third of men (34%) think money is the most important thing in life, opposed to women where only a quarter (25%) felt the same.
“Money shouldn’t be the most important thing in life, but often our finances can hold us back from doing the things that are important. By making the Experian Credit Score free, we want to help everyone take the first step to creating a happy future with confidence,” Clive Lawson concluded.
Check out the new CreditMatcher service at www.experian.co.uk
Notes to editors:
The poll was conducted by Censuswide across Britain in August 2016 and reached a representative sample of 3,826 UK consumers aged 16 and over.
Your credit score may differ at the three credit reference agencies (CRAs) because lenders share information on a voluntary basis and some choose to only work with one or two agencies.
CRAs like Experian do not decide who is given credit, contrary to popular belief, but the information we provide does help lenders determine which customers to accept, in conjunction with other information and based on their own criteria and policies. There is also no credit blacklist.
The information held by a CRA bureau on individuals’ credit is purely factual and shows that the vast majority of people in the UK successfully repay their credit commitments.
1. The UK average total credit card debt in June 2016 per household was £2,413, according to The Money Charity. Assuming card-holders paid the average credit card interest rate of 18.9%, total savings over one year equals £456.06
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