Today sees the highest number of 18th birthdays celebrated across the UK, and new research from free credit checking service ClearScore reveals an alarming trend. A third of 15 – 17 year olds plan to borrow, on average, £1,891 within a month of their 18th birthday, yet a quarter admit they have given no thought as to how they will pay it back.
Seven in ten predict they will spend on credit or take out a loan before they turn 19. And a massive 94 percent of this age group plan to use credit to fund major purchases before they hit 20, including 69 percent who plan to buy a car and 38 percent who have their eyes set on a smart TV.
The research also reveals two thirds (63 percent) say their parents have never discussed the importance of finances and credit agreements with them.
Justin Basini, ClearScore CEO, commented, “The moment teenagers reach their 18th birthday they begin their financial life – whether they realise it or not. Today’s research highlights that we’re not doing enough to help teenagers navigate this difficult transition. It can be all too easy for young people, with limited exposure to credit, to fall into dangerous financial behaviour. Credit is an important and relevant part of managing finances, but it’s crucial to ensure young people understand how to use it in the right way. We need to make conversations about the ‘pennies and pounds’ as commonplace as those about the ‘birds and the bees.”
Helping young people manage the transition into financial adulthood really matters. ClearScore’s Money Chat campaign aims to spark debate and make a positive contribution which will ultimately leave young people better equipped for their financial lives.
We’re delighted to be supporting ClearScore, with media coverage already featuring on ITV, Channel 5, The Mirror and The Sun. ClearScore have also published advice on how to have a money chat with your soon-to-be 18 year old. Stay tuned for the next phase of the campaign launching soon…