What’s your attitude to borrowing money?

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), more than a fifth of adults in Great Britain (22%, equal to around 11.5 million people) reported borrowing more money or using more credit because of the increased cost of living between 25 January and 5 February 2023. This is an increase from 17%, between 19 and 30 January 2022

Whether you regularly spend on an overdraft or hit up friends and family for a few quid here and there, what’s your attitude to borrowing in general? Do you hate to do it or feel comfortable enough, safe in the knowledge that you can always pay it back?

In this article, we share some views from people who have borrowed money in the past (and those who never or rarely borrow). Read on…

“I’m getting better at borrowing”

“I used to hate borrowing money,” says 39-year-old Larissa* from Lancashire, “This is even when I knew I could pay it back as soon as later the same day – for example, if I left my debit card in the office by mistake and a colleague offered to pay for my lunch until we got back.”

“I don’t know where my attitude to borrowing money has come from, as my parents have always been more than happy to lend me it. Many of my friends and other family members all have similar attitudes to my parents, too; my mum always says: “if you can’t ‘have a borrow’ from your old mum, who can you borrow from?!”.”

Larissa says she’s getting better at borrowing money when she needs it but adds that there’s rarely a need to. “When I was at university in my late teens and early 20s, money was a bit scarcer, but rather than borrow it, I’d just be as frugal as possible. It’s an attitude I’ve had throughout my life so far; if I can’t afford it, I won’t buy it – or I’ll buy a cheaper version.”

“I try to only borrow when I need something”

Suzanne, aged 35, also from Lancashire, isn’t totally against borrowing money but would sooner save up for something if she can.

She says: “I try to only borrow when I ‘need’ something. I’ve ‘wanted’ a new car now for a few years, but I put my sensible head on, and I don’t tend to borrow for things like that.

However, I’ve just taken a loan out because I actually ‘needed’ new windows and doors for my house; they were old and falling apart.”

Suzanne adds that it is often far too ‘easy’ to borrow money from some sources, such as banks. “I had the money for my windows and doors within a few clicks – and they were offering me way more than what I actually asked for! Which again, if I didn’t put my ‘sensible’ head on, I could have ended up with double the money I wanted and ended up in more debt.”

“I don’t borrow money for useless things.”

Gavin, aged 49, from Huddersfield, has a similar view, saying he’ll only borrow money for absolute ‘musts’. I wouldn’t borrow money for something I didn’t really need. I’d save up instead, even if that meant I didn’t get my hands on the item for years.”

“We’ll lend our children money but we don’t like borrowing.”

Soon-to-retire couple, Siobhan and Aled from Grimsby, agree that while they’re happy to lend their children money (via the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’), they’d rather save up when it comes to something they want or need to buy for themselves.

“I hate borrowing money” says Siobhan, “If I haven’t got it, we usually do without or start saving. I have borrowed when the kids were little, but I don’t like it, and Aled hates it too.”

What is your attitude to borrowing money? Perhaps you’d like to put some money aside for a rainy day, in the hope that you don’t need to lean on friends or family when it comes to borrowing some cash? View our range of products**, from our Lifetime ISA to our Tax Exempt Savings Plan. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions, too.

Until next time…

*Names and locations have been changed.

**Terms and conditions apply.





Need help?

Look at our
Customer Centre