It is no wonder so many UK citizens are turning to short term loans, with the average household having to stump up £200 in interest – let alone the repayment itself – every single month. That figure has been equated to almost a quarter of disposable income, although one would have to question how many households have £800 left each month after their bills were paid, given the rise in price of, well, absolutely everything one could class as an essential for day-to-day survival.
The Consumer Credit Counsel have been at their calculators yet again to give us the exact figures to represent what everyone suspects is behind the unprecedented growth of the pawnbroking and instant cash loan industries. However, this time the CCCS have highlighted that the proportionate rise was only minimal – the actual monetary figure paid in interest actually dropping. Other factors rising in the opposite direction were the foundation of this latest reflection on the UK householder’s plight.
The real burden for the third quarter of 2011, the snapshot in which the latest report was taken, is that the cost of living far outgrew the average household income from their salary – and that is nothing to do with them lending from online instant cash loan firms, that is the national average of wage increases failing to live with inflation under the regime of the austerity drive.
Within the findings looking into the nation’s debt plight, labelled quite simply the ‘Consumer Debt & Money Report’, is the sub-heading looking at how individuals are managing their debt and to whom they are turning for advice. Contrary to the Co-operative Bank’s recent findings which suggest that almost a third of those with debt problems are ignoring the burden until it has reached well over the four-figure mark, the CCCS have identified a growing number of people approaching middle age seeking their counsel.
For those who do not want to go down the instant cash loan or IVA route – or perhaps have and found out that it is too much of a risk if they are unable to accept the fact of how much debt they’re actually in – the CCCS provide unbiased advice of the next course of action, although undoubtedly some of these cases do wind up seeking help to write off their debts, irrespective of the damage it will do to their credit rating.
The shocking news for the 45+ age bracket, those historically seeing a little wealth return to the fold once the kids have left their room a mess for the last time and left home, is that almost 20% more of those seeking guidance are projected to be in that band within three years than were seven years ago. In 2005, 28% of CCCS clients were 45+; by December 2014, that figure is expected to rise to 47.6%.
Whilst the people in that bracket enjoyed the equity from their houses in the early-mid part of the last decade, being frivolous is now coming back to haunt them. House prices rose so much in that time, according to CCCS figures almost doubling from £85k to £160k – way beyond salary increases over the same period – that their offspring can now not get a foot on the property ladder. Couple the lack of real estate ownership with unemployment tickling 3M and you can perhaps see why parents with twenty-something children still at home without jobs – or prospects of one – are constantly leaning on short term loans to get them from one pay day to the next.
With no light at the end of the tunnel, you can see why pawnbrokers who offer short term loans are going hell for leather to put up as many shop fronts over the next three years as their budgets will allow.