How far would your savings go?

Jun 6, 2017


By Lyndsey Hall

A recent survey by Legal & General has revealed that the average employee has only got enough money in savings to maintain their lifestyle for about one month if their income suddenly stopped.

The BBC article, aptly titled ‘Deadline to the Breadline’, exposed the dire lack of savings across the country, evidenced by the survey of 2,000 people.

According to the results:

  • 26% said savings would run out in a week
  • 23% said they had no savings whatsoever
  • 22% said they had less than £500 in savings


L&G’s head of intermediary development, Richard Kateley said, “Unfortunately, the UK still clearly suffers from a savings and protection gap.”

The study found that the length of time savings would last varied across the UK, with Northern Ireland having the means to survive longest in the event of sudden income loss, and Wales the shortest.

Deadline to the breadline, based on location:

  • Wales, 26 days
  • South East England, 29 days
  • London, 31 days
  • Scotland, 31 days
  • South West England, 32 days
  • North West England, 33 days
  • North East England, 33 days
  • East Midlands, 34 days
  • West Midlands, 34 days
  • Yorkshire and the Humber, 34 days
  • Eastern England, 35 days
  • Northern Ireland, 36 days


“We merely rent our lifestyles and we pay each month for it through our earnings,” said Kateley. “Take away those earnings and it may not just be your house that you are thrown out of, but your entire lifestyle.”

We recommend building up an emergency fund of at least three months’ salary to protect against unexpected income loss and any other unforeseen costs.

How long could you survive on the savings you currently have? Is it longer or shorter than the average for your region? Let us know your thoughts on the survey in the comments, or join us on Twitter.

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Strangest excuses for not paying minimum wage

Changes to statutory redundancy pay

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