Divorce drives up debt

Alliance & Leicester’s report states that even when excluding mortgages, the average divorcee ends up with £4,984 of debt and is also likely to have no savings left.

Findings also indicate that those preparing for a divorce would also benefit from a debt management plan as 44 per cent of divorcees have no savings, compared to the national average of 32 per cent.

An average age of divorce of 54 means that this could also hit the finances of retirement at a time when there are already many warnings over pensioner debt.

“Splitting up clearly gives rise to a lot of costs, including setting up a new home,” commented Chris Rhodes, the managing director of Alliance & Leicester retail banking.

“This is reflected in the fact that the recently separated have the highest overall level of debt at £6,262.”

Commenting, Andrew Smith, marketing director of IVA
company ClearDebt, said it was not just married couples or couples in civil partnerships that suffered: “We find many people who are just living together make few arrangements to deal with their debt jointly – and one or other of the partners is left with responsibility for most of the debt when they split up.”

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