1 in 3 people don't pay their bills on time

The Momentum UK Team 28 January 2014

A third of people ignore bills when they arrive because they don’t have the money to pay them, according to new research from thinkmoney.

The research revealed that a third of people (32%) admit to having missed paying a bill on time at least once, with the same number confessing that they accidentally spent the money on something else.

Younger people were the most likely age group to have spent cash set aside for bills on other things, with two fifths (42.6%) of 18-24 year olds admitting to it. By contrast, less than half this number (17%) of over 55s said they had ever missed a bill for this reason.

According to the research, ignoring bills when they arrive is most common in 25-34 year olds, but at least one in five of every age group admits to putting off paying a bill at some point.

The research highlights the difficulty people faced when trying to mentally juggle all their different bills and bank accounts, to make sure that there is enough money in the right place when a bill comes out. It was found that over half (51%) of people are relying on memory alone to make sure they budget for bills, and they “mentally” set aside funds for bills each month.

Ian Williams, Director of Communications at thinkmoney, commented on the findings:

“It’s perhaps no surprise that a third of people don’t have the money available to pay their bills when they arrive, as so many of us rely on mind power alone to budget.

“Not having a careful budget in place can increase the risk of overspending and being left without the cash you need for bills.”

This research highlights the importance of day to day budgeting, whatever your age or circumstances, and reveals that consumers with busy lives need all the help they can get when it comes to managing their money.