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Creditfix LB 03-2017

The Secret Debt of UK Consumers


UK adults would see their personal debt rise to an average of ?4,618 before coming clean to family or friends about their financial situation.

The over-55 age group are the worst culprits, letting secret debt rise to an average of ?6,441 before telling partners, whilst the 18-34 age group have a lower threshold of ?2,936 before coming clean.

Research from online lender Sunny has also revealed that 17 per cent of UK adults do not know how much debt their partners are in.
Of relationship type, unmarried couples living together have the highest average debt threshold of ?6,017 before speaking up. Significantly higher than married couples at ?4,146. However, couples that live separately are the most honest, reaching only ?3,933 in personal debt before coming clean.

Around half of the consumers surveyed by the company claimed to be honest and open about debts. However, 17 per cent said that they would never reveal details of their debt to their partner, and 11 per cent admitted to lying to their other half about debt.

Of those that said they were open about their debt situation, 71 per cent said they never lied to their partners about anything. Whilst of those who stated they would not be honest about debt, 51 per cent admitted to also lying to their partners about other matters.

Scott Greever from Sunny commented: ‘We all know the importance of being honest in relationships. Hiding debt and money worries is risky and could ultimately damage both your relationship and your financial wellbeing. A problem shared is a problem halved, and facing up to the reality of your situation is the first step to taking back control and improving things.’

He continued: ‘If you are in a lot of debt, the worst thing you can do is keep it a secret and carry on adding to what you owe. Any type of credit should be used responsibly to get you out of a tight spot, when you know you can afford to pay back what you owe, not to support a lifestyle you can?t afford.

‘While talking about money with loved ones can be uncomfortable and is one of the top things couples argue about, it?s something we all need to do, and it could lead to a healthier relationship in the long-run. If you do feel that your finances are out of control, ask for help, whether it?s from a loved one or a specialist organisation. The most important thing is that you acknowledge it and take the first step to getting back on your feet.’

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