The UK Advice Map – Regional finances

Thomas Potter - Marketing Co-ordinator

September 30, 2019

Depending on where you live in the UK, your relationship with money may be different. Every one of our interactions with money will help form our understanding and confidence in dealing with financial situations.

In our recent Advice Gap report, we discovered some interesting statistics on each region’s relationship with money and financial decisions. Here’s what we found…

Londoners lack confidence

People living in London often face higher living costs in comparison to those living elsewhere in Britain[1] , which could leave them feeling less confident in making financial decisions. This was backed up by our research as we found that people living in London have the lowest confidence when it comes to selecting financial products.

54% were confident in choosing an appropriate mortgage in London, against the UK average of 60%. Scotland were the most confident, with 65% being able to confidently select a mortgage.

This lack of confidence also spread to more essential financial decisions such as choosing an appropriate current account. 81% of Londoners felt confident enough to do this against the UK average of 87%.

Our CEO, Anthony Morrow commented “Our research shows that the picture in terms of people’s confidence in choosing financial products is mixed across Britain, but those in London consistently come out as least confident. This may be due to the lower average age of Londoners compared to Britain as a whole[2]. Many Londoners have yet to deal with mortgages, energy tariffs and insurance and taking income from a pension is not yet on their radar.

“However, having an appropriate current account and savings product should be essential for all adults and it is concerning that those in the capital feel particularly ill-equipped to deal with these important financial decisions. We need to make sure that information around financial products is simple and easy to understand to make sure these crucial products are accessible to everyone that needs them.”

The East is struggling

Adults living the East of England were found to be struggling with their finances more than the rest of the UK. Although the East Of England is not a generally poor area of the UK, some of the most deprived neighbourhoods are located there[3].

In our Advice Gap research we discovered that 53% of the Eastern population ran out of money before payday at least once in the last year, with the average 46% across Britain.

Less than half (45%) said they were keeping up with their financial commitments without difficulty, less the UK average of 51%.

Finally, less than a third (32%) of those living in the East said they never experienced financial difficulties with the UK average at 36%.

It’s clear that these results show the East of England is struggling to stay on top of their finances and manage their financial situations confidently which can have a wider impact on their wellbeing.

Our CEO, Anthony Morrow commented on the issue saying “Our research shows that the picture in terms of people’s financial security is mixed across Britain, with those in the South of England generally faring better than their neighbours in the East of the country.

Financial services companies need to improve the financial confidence of the nation by ensuring that information is simple and easy to understand. Plugging the adult advice gap by making support and advice around good financial management and planning accessible to all areas of the UK is crucial to improving the wealth of the nation as a whole.”

What can we do to change this?

Education is very important when giving people the right tools to make the correct financial decisions for their personal situation.

There are plenty of websites available that have information on everything from current accounts, to mortgages. Check out Money Saving Expert or the Money Advice Service if you want more information on a specific financial product or issue.

We recommend researching as much as possible before making a financial decision as it can have a long-lasting effect on both your financial and mental wellbeing.

If you’re not sure of your next step, get some advice. OpenMoney was created to help people who aren’t sure what the next step is for their finances – after all, our research revealed that 19.8 million people would appreciate a bit of advice on their finances! So, if you want clear and honest advice, we’re here for you.

If you would like to read more about the Advice Gap report we produced in partnership with YouGov, you can head to our blog here and download the report at the bottom.

[1] - https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/091415/how-much-money-do-you-need-live-london.asp

[2] - http://bit.ly/37F7jof

[3] - https://www.eadt.co.uk/ea-life/four-maps-show-some-of-suffolk-and-essex-s-poorest-and-richest-neighbourhoods-sit-side-by-side-1-5100441

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