One in 11 people, or 4.5 million British adults, have less than £10 a month left over once they have paid their essential bills, new research has found.
With many households struggling to make ends meet, the findings from budgeting account provider thinkmoney reveal the worryingly small amounts of disposable income people have left once they've met all their financial commitments.
Of the 2,149 people polled, one in four said they had less than £50 a month to spend after bills.
Across the UK, the average monthly disposable income was £224.50. However, there was a wide gender difference with men reporting having disposable incomes averaging £272.50, almost twice as much as women (£190.20).
Young people reported having the least disposable income, with 18-24 year-olds averaging £174.20 – some 22% below the overall UK average. Almost one in three people in this age group have less than £50 a month to spend after bills.
By contrast, the wealthiest in terms of post-bills spending money are people over 65, with an average of £269.50 a month available to spend.
The amount of disposable income also varies depending on where people live. It is highest in London, at an average of £261, and the South East, at £244. People in the North East and Wales have the lowest disposable incomes, at £199 and £181 respectively.
Worryingly, one in six people questioned in Wales said they had less than £10 a month to spend after bills.
“It’s stressful not knowing if you will have enough money to pay the bills and afford added extras each month,” said Ian Williams, director of communications at thinkmoney.