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'Worrying' Number Of Young Brits In Debt

Aug 29, 2007
Young people are facing increasing concerns over debt, according to a new study.

In a survey commissioned by ClearDebt, carried out on social networking website Facebook, just under half (48 per cent) of the 200 consumers questioned aged 18 to 24 currently owe money. Meanwhile, about one of six (14 per cent) believe that they are set to be in debt within five years' time, although this proportion falls to seven per cent for those thinking they will be in the red by 2017. Conversely, 32 per cent of respondents think that they will never be in arrears.

The study also showed that women are most likely to be paying back personal loans and credit cards, not only now but also in the future. According to the financial services firm, 50 per cent of the females surveyed are currently in debt, in comparison to 45 per cent of males.

Meanwhile, one in five women think that they will have payments outstanding by 2012, with this proportion falling to nine per cent (about one in ten) of men. Findings from the company also showed a difference of three percentage points from females (nine per cent) predicting that they could be in debt within the forthcoming decade compared to males (six per cent). However, with 40 per cent of men estimating that they will never develop debt problems, the company reported that such consumers could actually be set to face unforeseen financial difficulties.

Commenting on the figures, Andrew Smith, marketing director for the financial services firm, said: "We found it worrying that 48 per cent of the 18 to 24-year-olds we sampled were already in debt. Strikingly there's a big gender gap too with only 21 per cent of women believing they will never be in debt, compared with 40 per cent of men. Sadly, we believe the men are being rather over-optimistic."

Earlier this month Susan Hannums, savings manager for AWD Chase de Vere, claimed that consumers need to take a greater interest in their financial situation so as to avoid incurring unexpected debt difficulties. She claimed that despite five interest rate rises taking place by the Bank of England over the last 12 months, Britons are increasingly borrowing money through avenues such as secured loans and credit cards, despite the surge in pressure they are facing in making repayments. However, it was reported that consumers are generally ignoring any financial difficulties until it becomes impossible for them to do so. "People only tend to become wise to debt when the debt catches up with them," she commented.

Ms Hannums reported that consumers need to be "totally sensible" when organising their finances. The savings manager also stated that those looking to either borrow money or take out a credit card to transfer monies owed are being advised to look for the lowest rate of interest possible and attempt to keep spending "down to a minimum". And with the nation's financial management problems "completely out of hand", taking out debt consolidation loans was suggested as being a potential way of managing monthly outgoings
About the Author
Tom Dawson is the Editor in Chief for Essentially Home Loans where visitors can apply for cheap loans online. We also specialise in debt consolidation loans, and secured loans
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