UK Consumer Attitudes Towards Debt

by Mark McAlpine - Executive Director – Financial Services
| minute read

A number of factors have influenced a significant shift in the landscape of debt in the UK over the last few years and impacted an already fragile consumer population. To help to understand those changes and what they mean for people here in the UK, we conducted a survey of 1,020 representative UK consumers into their preferences and attitudes when it comes to debt and its repayment.

Let’s take a look at what the survey told us

Infographic showing statistics around UK consumer attitudes towards debt. See transcription for full details

At the top of the infographic it reads UK consumer attitudes towards debt. With a line underneath saying to get a true understanding of what consumers want from creditors, we conducted a survey of 1,020 representative UK citizens in June 2022. The results were intriguing, indicating a gap between customer expectation and reality.

Section 1- vulnerable situations. 48% of respondents had experienced at least one vulnerable situation in the last 12 months. This includes redundancy, reduction in working hours, furlough, bereavement, long term illness or injury, mental health illness, divorce or end of a long term relationship.

Section 2- repayment frequency. Question asking how regularly would you prefer to make debt repayments? 69% say monthly, 4% say weekly, 4% say flexibly and 22% said not applicable.

Section 3- missed payments. Question asking would you welcome the chance to spread payments over several weeks or months, rather than needing to pay in one go? 79% of respondents welcome the ability to spread the cost of any missed payments. Of that figure 42% said yes absolutely and 37% said yes, probably, but I'd want to know more.

Section 4- personalised service. Question asking does your main bank or building society provide a personalised service? 4% said always, 48% said never and 58% said sometimes.

Section 5- communications preferences. Question asking how would you prefer to be asking for the repayment to be made? 30% said email, 20% said app notification, 9% said instant message, 16% said text message, 9% said phone call, 17% said by post and 1% said a visit to your door.

Find out more

Read more about the survey results in our latest white paper ' How creditors can deliver unrivalled CX to consumers in vulnerable situations.'



Related content

Designing the future experience for existing mortgage customers at a leading European bank

We’re delighted that we successfully helped our client create a vision for future services using a human centered design approach to meet their customer and client goals through a 3-year transformation.

Putting customers at the heart of the Co-operative Bank

An innovative focus on ethics, honesty and a transparent customer experience delivered award-winning and dramatic results for The Co-operative Bank

Debt Management - a holistic approach

In this research report, we highlight and examine the need to adopt a holistic approach on the management, recovery, and mitigation of debt due to the rising cost of living crisis and economic downturn in the UK.