Back to September 2015

Britain still a nation of savers, new study shows

Britain is still a nation of savers, new research from Leeds Building Society has discovered.

In an era of payday loans and ever-flexible plastic, a survey by Leeds Building Society* revealed that more than three-quarters of Britons (78.6%) still have the savings habit.

A quarter (25.5%) of those surveyed had between £1,000 and £5,000 squirrelled away, although almost two in five (39.7%) had £1,000 or less. One in eight (12.1%) had £100 or less saved.

More than one in four (26.1%) is putting aside up to £50 each month, with a further 17.6% managing to save between £101 and £200 per month.

The top five savings reasons were:

  1. Contingency/emergency fund - 45.8%
  2. Home deposit/towards moving house - 40.5%
  3. Holiday - 34.5%
  4. Rainy day - 30.0%
  5. New car – 18.1%

Savers said they were most likely to be deterred from putting money away each month because:

  1. Not earning enough to save - 57.9%
  2. Past debts – 39.7%
  3. Current loans and credit cards – 35.1%
  4. Cost of having children – 29.0%
  5. Monthly cost of accommodation – 18.2%

Most people picked up the savings habit as children, with 18.2% saying they have been saving since they were 15 or younger. The next most common age to start saving was 25 to 27, accounting for 16.7% of those surveyed.

"We were set up as a building society 140 years ago by people who chose to save, so they would be able to buy the homes they wanted," said Jaedon Green, Leeds Building Society's Director of Products.

"Our founders prized the virtues of thrift and prudence – in an age of quick and easy credit nowadays, it's interesting that people are still prepared to put money aside and wait to buy the things which matter most to them.

"There's a lot of satisfaction in watching your savings grow until you can make the big purchase you've been planning – whether that's children's pocket money towards a computer game, teenagers saving for their first car, or building up the deposit for a new home."


Notes to Editors

*Leeds Building Society surveyed 1,000 people through OnePoll in August 2015.

Awards won by Leeds Building Society in the past 12 months include the 'Innovation Award (Lenders)' at the Mortgage Finance Gazette Awards 2015, in addition to being named 'Best Intermediary Lender', both for the second consecutive year. The Society also received the award for 'Best Use of Technology (Lenders)'.

Leeds Building Society has 67 branches throughout the UK, Gibraltar and Ireland and assets of £12.7bn (as at 30th June 2015). The Society has operated from the centre of Leeds since 1886.