One third of Scots turning to friends and family to borrow substantial sums of money

26 June 2019


36% of Scots borrow money from friends and family 8% say it has resulted in family tension 58% say they are happy to lend money to family members.


One third of Scots (36%) have borrowed money from family and friends; yet one in ten (8%) do not expect to pay the money back according to new research by Bank of Scotland.

Part of Bank of Scotland’s ‘How Scotland Lives’ study, the nation-wide analysis from YouGov of 3,048 adults also found that almost a quarter (23%) are borrowing money from friends and family just to get by, using the cash to cover day-to-day living costs.

Scots are most likely to borrow money from the Bank of Mum and Dad (29%); borrowing an average of £3,209. Meanwhile, one in 20 (6%) have borrowed from siblings and 4% from friends, with just 3% seeking financial support from grandparents.

Over half (54%) of those that borrow money say they feel guilty for doing so, as they hoped to provide for themselves, and one in ten (8%) admitted that the borrowing of money has caused tension in their family.

As I am sure most Scots would agree, we are a small but generous nation, especially when it comes to family members, feeling much more comfortable lending than borrowing. It’s important for us all to open up about money with our family and friends as this can help with easing financial strains or worries.

Ricky Diggins, Network Director at Bank of Scotland.

However, over half of Scots who have lent money (58%) say they are happy to give a helping hand to family and friends, with just one in ten (10%) feeling annoyed about lending to loved ones. Those in Aberdeen (76%) and Fife (68%) appear to be the most generous regions and are happiest to offer a loan in times of need.

South Scotland (49%) and Dundee (48%) are shown to be less likely to hand out the cash than the rest of Scotland, with only half happy to lend money to a family member. Those in Lothians (17%) and Dundee (17%) are also more likely to be annoyed about being asked for a loan. It comes as a quarter (25%) of Scots don’t expect to get their loan back from loved ones.

Scots are likely to lend more to their children than anyone else, loaning their kids an average of £3,209 last year. However, the amount lent to children has fallen by an average of £500, since 2016.

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