31% Parents Pressured into Overspending This Christmas
- Parents face more pressure from friends on social media
- Almost a third of parents bowed to pressure to spend more
- 18% pressured into buying a car for teenage children
- Younger parents feel more pressured than others
Parents are bowing to social pressure and spending more money on their children than they can afford, according to the latest European Consumer Payment Report from Intrum.
The report found that 31% of parents in the UK had felt pressure from their friends online for them to spend more on their children than they felt they could afford, and this figure is predicted to rise with Christmas coming up.
The main sources of pressure were from friends on social media, other parents, and an increase in sales throughout the year, making parents feel like they had to spend money.
The increased pressures on parents have led many to look for ways to save money this Christmas.
Kirsty-lou Gray, a member of the Latest Deals money saving community, said, “My daughters are 10 and 8, and my son is 2, I always go over the top and buy way too much at Christmas! I start my birthday and Christmas shopping really early to get the best bargains.
“I also get told that I buy my children too much, but I always get things at bargain prices with deals; I’m actually really tight with money and refuse to pay full price for toys.
“Sites like Latest Deals make me check I’m getting the best deal before I go and buy the stuff I want, so social media has had a positive influence on my spending as I can get the best prices for what I want.”
A car is the item that parents felt most pressure to buy for their children at Christmas, as 18% said they bought one after feeling pressured, rather than because they could afford it.
This is higher than the average in Europe, where just 9% bought a car because of pressure.
Intrum, a European credit management firm that conducted the survey, said, “Our analysis shows how social pressures from friends can result in unsound, long-term debt. We need to do more to create trust and teach every new generation how to spend responsibly.”
The report showed that young parents (18-34), were most likely to feel pressure from their friends on social media to over spend.
More than half of this age group reported that they felt pressures to overspend on their kids after seeing their friends’ posts on social media sites.
Almost a third of Brits of all ages said that social media creates a pressure to consumer more than they should, especially around Christmas time when people can show off their presents online.
Caroline Jones has also been on the hunt for bargains this Christmas, she said, “My kids gets what I can afford. I always go mad and want to buy them loads, but they never get designer stuff, and I try and find the cheapest versions of games and toys. eBay has been my best friend for finding a bargain, it means I can get them more without going over budget.”
Parent Steph Shenton said, “It’s an absolute nightmare for me this year with teenagers. They want expensive speakers, trainers, hoodies, etc!
“I can’t just give them a couple of presents so I’ve got to get some more. Parents always have to make things happen though, not sure how I’ll manage but I’m dreading it, pass me the wine!”
Stephen Kan has also admitted to spending more than planned. He said, “I started my shopping last January and went way over the top by July because there have been so many sales.
“When I see that I can get up to 80% off on designer items I always go for it, that way I can get nicer presents.”