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Cost of living prevents one in four young adults from moving out of parents’ home

17th May 2024

  • Money worries are rife with young adults, as almost nine in ten (87%) surveyed1 are concerned about living costs
  •  A quarter (25%)  say the cost of living has prevented them from moving out of their parents’ home.
  • TSB customer debit card data reveals an increase in young adults spending at budget friendly brands and cutting back on food and drink
  • Significant increase in young people using Buy Now Pay Later – up a third (32%) in a year

A TSB survey reveals nine in ten (87%) young adults (aged 18-24) are concerned about the increased cost of living with a quarter (25%) saying  it has prevented them from moving out of their parents’ home.

TSB found that the 87 percent of young adults who are concerned2 about the cost of living are making spending adjustments with:

  • Over half (55%) spending less on take-aways/eating out.
  • Over half (54%) shopping at budget friendly retailers.
  • Almost half (47%) spending less on leisure/entertainment activities.
  • Two fifths (39%) reviewing or cancelling subscriptions.
  • Two fifths (39%) using apps such as Vinted, Gumtree, Facebook to sell items or buy second-hand.

The bank analysed the debit card spending of customers3 aged 18-24 in Q1 2024 compared with Q1 2023 and found young adults are looking for cheaper options and cutting back on daily treats like coffee and fast food:


  • Young adults have shopped more at wallet-friendly Shein, which saw a 47 percent spending spike. Meanwhile, spending at brands such as Zara, H&M and ASOS declined or remained flat in comparison. Spending on TikTok has risen significantly with Temu also seeing growth.

Buy now pay later

  • Spending by young adults on four of the largest BNPL providers rose by a third (32%) indicating a reliance on financing to shop.


  • As prices rise, young adults are treating themselves to fewer coffees – with a 10 percent fall in purchases at major high street chains.

Fast food restaurants

  • Total purchases at fast food restaurants (McDonald’s, KFC, Burger King) have also decreased by 10 percent.

Over half (52%) of those surveyed had no money to save or put aside each month and almost half (46%) of those surveyed have postponed bigger purchases like a holiday or buying a car.

Carys Barnes, Head of Personal Current Accounts, TSB said: “Whilst inflation is coming down, it’s clear many are still feeling the effects of increased costs and our data suggests young adults are being hit hard.

“Making lifestyle adjustments is a good place to start to stay on top of your finances, and there are many tools and resources available to help budget.”

TSB offers tips for young adults to stay on top of your finances:

1.    Managing your money starts with working out what you’ve got coming in and where you’re spending it. You can then think about how you divide this into your essential spending like rent and utilities and other spending like entertainment. By understanding this, you’ll be able to work out a budget to see how much money you have left each month and how to allocate money for your ‘wants’ like shopping and socialising.  

2.     Make use of tech – there are loads of tools available that can help you to manage your spending better or to get into the habit of saving. Some banking apps will give you insights and/or automated alerts into where your money is going and the retailers where you’re spending the most money. You can also set spending caps to limit the amount you spend on certain things and set reminders for upcoming payments for trial subscriptions.

Some banks can also help to get you started on the savings journey by rounding up every debit card payment to the nearest pound and automatically transferring the money into a savings account.

Alternatively, there are many money management apps available like Snoop or Plum that are designed specifically to help you manage money and save.

3.     Look for discounts/savings – if you’re paying for bills, shop around for cheaper deals that suit your needs e.g. a cheaper phone contract. Or shop around for deals/money off the product you want. If you’re a student, make use of your student discount when you are spending money – have a look at websites like StudentBeans, UniDays and Totum. And there are plenty of deals that are available to all young adults, not just students. 

Also, some retailers and credit cards offer cashback or loyalty schemes when you spend – so you could be saving as you spend or getting something back. Have a look at credit cards that offer cashback or rewards and/or look at cashback sites such as Quidco or Topcashback.

4.     Do an audit of your subscriptions – often we sign up to various subscriptions like music or the gym. Do an audit and ask yourself whether you use it often enough to get the value out of it – often they’re unused and it can add up. Most platforms now offer family or group packages, like Spotify, which might provide you with better value when sharing with friends or family.

5.     Can you boost your income – with many second-hand websites increasingly popular, do have a think about what you have at home that you no longer wear or use. Websites such as Vinted and Depop can provide you with an opportunity to make some money from items you no longer need. By Rotation or Rent the Runway also provide the opportunity to earn money by listing your clothing items to rent.    

Equally, Gumtree or eBay can help with other miscellaneous items that you’d like to sell. Other options for making some extra money include signing up to do surveys or if you’re creative, selling what you make on Etsy.

- Ends -

Notes to Editors

  •  1 The research was conducted by Censuswide, with 1013 young people (aged 18-24 years) between 26.0.2024 and 30.04.2024. Censuswide abides by and employs members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles.
  •  2 “Extremely concerned” and “Somewhat concerned” answers combined
  • 3 TSB internal customer data looks at debit card spending for customers aged 18-24, comparing Q1 2024 with Q1 2023. 
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The information contained in this press release is intended solely for journalists and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions. ​