Research by life and health insurance specialist Scottish Provident, the protection brand of Abbey National, which was designed to take the financial pulse of the UK, has revealed a picture of far-reaching complacency through the country when it comes to people protecting their financial future.
The research, carried out by MORI Financial Services on behalf of Scottish Provident, shows that the majority of British families are walking a financial tightrope, with nearly half the nation saying it does not have enough insurance cover or savings if the main wage earner lost their job.
The survey of families reveals that 41% of respondents would not have adequate protection insurance, savings or assets to draw upon if the main wage earner suddenly found themselves unemployed.
And 11% of all respondents say they would have to sell the house or move to a smaller home if this happened and the main wage earner was not able to find re-employment soon after. Yet 76% dream of a life without too many financial worries.
In response to this serious and widespread issue of under-insurance, Scottish Provident has produced Families Inc, the first Annual Report designed to take the financial pulse of the average UK family.
The report, presented in the same way that a company would release its annual results, puts the finances of a fictional everyday British family, the Smiths, firmly under the spotlight.
Nick Kirwan, head of marketing and product development at Scottish Provident, says the research results clearly show that people are not being serious about planning for their future, despite yearning for a comfortable life. He adds: “Everyone dreams of not having financial worries but without careful planning that isn't possible. People seem to be reluctant to sit down and list the basics such as what do we earn and what do we owe. We hope Families Inc will change that.”
Included in Families Inc is a blank profit and loss account, which can be used by families to check their own financial situation and help pinpoint any weaknesses in their current financial circumstances. Families can call 0141 944 3908 for a copy or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Families can also log on to a specially created Families Inc website,wwww.FamiliesInc.co.uk, and use the online calculator to assess their financial wellbeing.
Kirwan says: “We want to encourage families to take their 'financial temperature' on a regular basis, the way companies do.”