There are around six million over 50s dealing with debts with the average amount owed standing at £12,000.
In a poll of more than 1,000 over 50’s, three in ten are currently paying debts outside, or alongside their mortgage. Around two thirds having borrowed money using their credit card, while personal loans are the chosen method for just over a quarter of over 50s.
The most common reason to borrow money amongst this age group is to purchase something they couldn’t afford at the time. With just over one in seven borrowing lump sums to make home improvements and repairs.
Further research uncovered a number of reasons for borrowing money with many over 50s taking full advantage of the 0% finance deals on credit cards to pay for new cars, holidays and home renovations.
Although, it’s not all bad news, one in five indebted over 50’s believe they will be debt free in 12 months’ time, although on average the group believe it will take them more than two and a half years to pay back the full amount they owe. Sadly, this leaves one in ten accepting the belief they will never pay off their debts.
The majority of the over 50s surveyed are able to service their debts, whilst continuing to live comfortably. However, almost 30% admit to struggling to pay their debts, with a quarter feeling overwhelmed.
Anyone struggling with debt may not know where to turn, but there are lots of free advice services available across the UK to help in such situations. For more information visit www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk