A new KIS Finance survey has revealed some of people’s financial concerns relating to lockdown restrictions easing and the pressure to socialise again with nearly 40% are concerned about being able to afford socialising after lockdown.
The company’s research has found that 38.1% of people are concerned about overpressure from friends and family to go out and make the most of being out of lockdown when they can’t afford it and that 52.8% of those aged 18-24 are fearing post-lockdown social pressures after being one of the groups most affected financially by the pandemic.
34.3% of people are worried about losing their jobs in the coming months. This is either due to their workplace not surviving after lockdown or being made redundant when the furlough scheme ends in September.
Whilst 14.1% of people are concerned over having to live off of a lower income than before the pandemic and 11.2% of people are concerned over the payment holidays ending in July.
The survey revealed that 38.1% of people are concerned over pressure from friends and family to socialise and make up for what they’ve missed over the past year. People are worried about being pushed into going on holiday, day trips, and meals out when they can’t afford it.
This feeling is shared particularly by people aged 18-24 with 52.8% of this group citing pressure to socialise when they can’t afford it as a concern of theirs.
This figure remains high in the 25-34 and 35-44 age groups, with the level of concern reducing as people get older.
Holly Andrews, Managing Director of KIS Finance said “Living under constant restrictions has been difficult for almost everyone at some point over the last year and a lot of us are desperate to see family and friends, as well as go on holiday and make up for what we’ve missed. However, it’s important to remember that not everyone will be able to keep up and be able to afford the same level of socialising as before the pandemic. Young adults have been particularly affected by reduced incomes and the need for increased borrowing, and they’re also the age group feeling the greatest pressure to make the most of life after lockdown.”
“As much as you may want to go out and socialise, it’s important not to let yourself get into any further debt to fund holidays and days out. Now’s the time to create a budget and work out a debt repayment and spending plan for the coming months. Carrying debt for a long time, especially as a young adult, can really damage your credit score and affect your ability to obtain a mortgage in the future. Paying off any debt accumulated over the pandemic should be a priority as soon as you can afford to do so.”
“Payment holidays have been essential to so many of us over the last year, and people who have lost income are going to struggling when they come to an end in a few months’ time.”
If you’re worried about how you’re going to cope once payment holidays end, then it’s very important that you speak to your lender as soon as possible. If you don’t speak to your lender then your repayments will restart automatically, potentially with higher monthly repayments to make up the shortfall.”
Lenders are required to work with you to find a suitable repayment plan based on your circumstances. They may be able to come up with a new plan which involves reducing your monthly payments, extending the term of your loan, and waiving any fees or charges to make it more manageable. After all, it’s in their best interest to make it easier for you to pay the loan back, so make sure you speak to them if you think you’re going to struggle with payments.”
Table – Concerns over job loss by age
Table – Payment holidays by age