28th September 2021

UK missing out financially as a result of ‘want it now’ attitude says HSBC UK research
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New researchby HSBC UK has revealed that nearly half of Brits(49%) say the modern world has made them develop a ‘want it now’ attitude and almost two in five(38%) Brits confess to feeling impatient in life.

Slow walkers, public transport delays and having to wait for the internet to load were among the top factors likely to ignite our impatience. The average adult is willing just wait a maximum of 15 minutes on hold on the phone before hanging up, showing we really are an impatient-nation.

When it comes to finances, four in ten(40%) people admit to spending more money to get what they want quicker, rather than waiting and making savings that could add up over time.

The study also found that despite saving an average of £1,279 over the last year–likely to be due to lockdown – almost two in five(38%) of young adults aged 18-34 have never considered investing it. Almost one in five(19%) say that the time it takes to see returns would put them off investing.

This need for instant gratification is hampering people’s ability to plan for their financial future, whether that’s short term goals such as saving for a holiday or emergency repairs, medium term such as a house purchase or wedding, or long term including building a pot for a child’s education or planning for a comfortable retirement.

Of those that were considering how to grow their money in the long-run, turning to unusual investments in the hope of making a quick financial gain was commonplace among 32% of 18-34-year olds, with investments in things like sports memorabilia(21%, classic cars(23%) and instruments(20%) and even vintage stamps(14%) are all favoured over long term investment options.

The survey found that 57% of this age group blame the rise of technologies like smartphones for them being left with no patience and this unwillingness to wait also applies to people’s finances.

HSBC UK reveals that instant gratification is costing them. Four in 10 are willing to spend more money to get the things they want sooner.

To help impatient Brits take control of their longer term finances, HSBC UK has partnered with psychologist Jo Hemmings to help people conquer their short-term outlooks and set themselves up for longer term success.

JHemmings, Behavioural Psychologist, comments “Our brains are naturally wired up to enjoy the dopamine hit that comes with achieving instant gratification and this can come from anything in life, including our finances.

With the amount of technology we have at our fingertips nowadays, it can often feel easy to chase instant fixes in the hope of a quick reward. But there are a few easy things we can all do in these situations that can help us retrain our brains to focus on self-control and prolong our anticipation so we can achieve a longer term, potentially safer, gain.”

James Hewitston, Head of Wealth Management at HSBC UK, added “While most of us have goals for the future, it can seem a long way off so it’s easy to focus on what we want now and worry about the future later.

The need for instant gratification is hampering people’s ability to plan for their financial future, whether that’s short term goals such as saving for a holiday or emergency repairs, medium term such as a house purchase or wedding, or long term including building a pot for a child’s education or planning for a comfortable retirement."

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