Half of UK adults are struggling to pay their bills and keep up credit commitments, new research has revealed.
That figure is up from one in three back in 2006.
Some 52% of the 5,000 people surveyed by the government-backed Money Advice Service admitted that they were struggling on the finance front – compared to 35% seven years ago.
The research also revealed 36% of people have experienced a ‘shock’ to their finances in the last three years, with 21% seeing a large drop in income and 42% having to think about how to cover an unexpected bill.
However, on a positive note, the study also found people are now doing more to adapt to their situations. For example, the number of people checking their bank statements has increased since 2006, with almost 84% saying they now keep a close eye on their money.
Over half of the adults involved in the survey stated that they now regularly check all incomings and outgoings on their bank statements – in order to keep track of their money – and two out of five people said they look for suspicious transactions.
Also, over half the population save something each month, the same percentage as in 2006.
However, it is being suggested that peoples’ money skills and knowledge remain poor. One in six adults was unable to identify the correct balance on a bank statement and one in three did not understand the impact of inflation on their savings.
“In theory, money management is easy – spend less than you earn and consider your future,” said Caroline Rookes, chief executive of the Money Advice Service said. “But the difficulty comes when applying this in the real world.”