Survey reveals average Brit borrows over £300,000 in their lifetime

If you are 35 you could be at your "peak."

Sunday, 27th August 2017, 8:36 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 1:02 pm
A new report on British borrowing habits has revealed that the average Brit will borrow over 300,000 in their lifetime.

But it may not be a good thing as new statistics from MoneySupermarket Today reveal that is the age at which British people are more likely to be juggling the cost of young children with mortgages and loan repayments for cars, holidays and weddings.

For the first time ever, the leading price comparison website has charted the average lifetime of borrowing, analysing 2.7 million credit card and loan inquires on its Smart Search eligibility tool to build a unique picture of the nation’s key borrowing milestones.

The report reveals that the average British borrower will owe £309,000 over their lifetime, including £111,000 in interest should they buy a house at the average price, get a student loan, live with credit card for a decade and take out personal loans for a new car and a holiday abroad.

The timeline plots the ‘financial rites of passage’ that Brits will transition through during adulthood:

With university fees nearly trebling to £9,000 in 2012, it’s not surprising that borrowing starts at just 23 years old, the average age for students to inquire about a credit card as they embark on their post-university career:

The late twenties represents a major borrowing peak – as financial responsibilities start to kick in but Brits are two years away from hitting the national salary average (£28,200) this age sees the highest rate of inquiries for credit cards and loans

The peak age for having a baby is now 32 and has been steadily increasing over the last fifty years. The delay may also mean prospective parents feel better prepared financially to cope with the £230,000 cost of raising a child to 21.

With a mortgage, children and previous outstanding loans, 35 is when Brits most feel the financial squeeze, with the number of applications for ‘debt loans’ which are loans specifically to pay off other debts,, soaring at this age

With rocketing housing prices and the introduction of new stamp duty tariffs, families are increasingly opting to stay put and extend as opposed to trading up, with home improvement loans peaking at the age of 39.

The most common age for divorce is now a relatively young 44 years old, costing the average divorcee a huge £70,000, nine times higher than the average wedding loan.

While this age sees the lowest rate of inquiries for loans and credit cards, the amount requested is at its highest, revealing that borrowing continues well into retirement age

Dan Plant, editor-in-chief at MoneySuperMarket, says, “Our Smart Search tool is used every 12 seconds in the UK, which has helped give us an unprecedented insight into borrowing over the average lifetime.

"While it’s clear that people reach a ‘financial crunch’ point at 35, no matter how old you are, it’s always wise to plan ahead and choose your products carefully before you borrow, to make sure you can afford the repayments.”

For more information and to see where you sit on the ‘Age of Borrowing’ timeline, visit: