There is a shared truth among middlemen workers and citizens when speaking about money: it is hard to get and very easy to spend. In fact, spending money is infinite easier than earning it as the world actually works thanks and towards to the always-in-movement scheme. Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean it hurts when we come to realize where that hard-earning extra pounds went to. It is even more painful when we look our bank statement and we see that most of it has gone in things we definitely didn’t need or are banal, purchases made on a bad day and driven by compulsive non-rational behaviour.
Takeaway food, ultra-tech devices we barely know how to use them or what are they for, new clothes and that extra food we surely didn’t need as we plan to go on a diet soon… are just few of the purchases that British regret the most when spending money, and a new survey reassure what we all though about it: we spend more money than we should, and most of the times without a proper thinking.
As such, money spent on takeaway food (16%) and alcohol (14%) are the UK’s most regretted purchases of 2018, followed by frivolous spending on the home (14%), fashion (11%) and dining out (10%) according to research from Marcus by Goldman Sachs. The study delved into the nation’s spending habits and financial hopes for 2019.
A third (34%) of UK adults who ordered food for delivery spent between £150 and £300 on takeaways. Socialising also took its toll on the UK’s bank balances, with 15% of adults spending more than £1,000 on alcohol, and 25% spending over £500 on nights out.
Speaking about the research, Managing Director of Marcus by Goldman Sachs, Des McDaid said: “With money being such an emotive topic it’s easy to see how so many people have looked back over the year and wished they had spent their money more wisely.
New year, new financial outlook
While nearly a third (29%) of UK adults are happy with their financial situation, the vast majority (71%) are not, which indicates that they may be planning to make changes to how they manage their money in 2019: 35% plan to save more, one in three (33%) plan to spend less and 19% aim to pay off their debt in the new year.
It’s the younger generation that is most optimistic about their future finances, with 34% of 18 to 34-year-olds predicting that they will be better off this time next year. In contrast, a quarter (26%) of those over 55 expect to be worse off.
Across the country, there are big regional differences in financial outlook for 2019. The top three most optimistic regions that hope to be in a better financial position this time next year are:
- London – 29% of residents expect to be better off this time next year
- East Midlands – 25%
- West Midlands – 24%
In contrast, the regions in which residents are expecting to be worse off with respect to their financial position next year:
- Northern Ireland – 31%
- Scotland – 28%
- Yorkshire and Humberside – 24%
Des McDaid continued: “An important conclusion from the research for me is the optimism that’s being shown about the coming year, especially by the younger generations. Many people are planning to make positive changes to improve their financial situation and boost their savings.
“For those planning to start saving next year then our online savings account aims to offer a consistently-competitive interest meaning that their money will work hard for them.”
The results and conclusions described above are based on a representative online survey of 2,004 UK adults. Responses were gathered from the 7th to 11th of December 2018, and the data has been weighted to be nationally representative.