Nearly a quarter of Scots 'in debt over household bills and groceries'

TSB’s research shows that six in ten adults are finding repayment of bills and credit commitments a financial burden.

Nearly a quarter of Scots in debt over household bills and groceries, data from TSB says iStock

Nearly a quarter of Scottish adults have taken out debt to pay for household bills or groceries, a bank has said.

According to new data, more than a quarter (26%) of Scots have taken on – or plan to take on – debt in the last 12 months, with 24% of those borrowers planning to use this for household bills, and 19% for groceries.

TSB’s latest Money Confidence Barometer research shows that six in ten adults (58%) in the country are finding keeping up with the repayment of their bills and credit commitments a financial burden.

Additionally, one in eight (12%) have fallen behind or missed three or more payments for credit commitments or domestic bills in the last six months.

Of the things that worry them most about their personal finances right now, home energy costs are the most common – with seven in ten (68%) people citing this.

Grocery costs are a worry for around half (52%) of people in Scotland, and over one-third (37%) of Scots with a mortgage are worried about not being able to afford to re-mortgage their home if living costs continue to rise.

Adding to challenges faced in this difficult period, more than one-third (35%) of those surveyed said their financial situation was negatively affecting their mental health.

More than a quarter (28%) reported it was negatively impacting their sleep, and 16% said it is directly affecting their physical health.

Despite these worries, almost half (49%) of those surveyed said they had not gone to anyone to ask for advice or support their finances in the past 12 months.

Nicola Bannister, financial support director at TSB, said: “This research shows the continued financial challenge facing many households in Scotland.

“TSB is ready to help customers with any advice they might need and we’re already contacting some customers to signpost them to the support we offer.”