You’re only 24? Isn’t it time to grow up?

18 is seen to be the age we become an adult but as a nation we are beginning to delay taking on the roles and responsibilities adulthood brings, according to new findings from Scottish Widows’ Attitudes to Planning survey.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 15th January 2012, 5:11 am

Nearly half the population (47 per cent) do not feel like a responsible “grown up” in all areas of life until the age of 25, with a third (33 per cent) of Brits not feeling like an adult until they are 26 or over.

Surprisingly, a massive 49 per cent of those that don’t feel like a grown up believe they will never feel like a grown up.

However, perhaps the nation is growing up quicker than they think, as Brits are starting to take control of their money matters at an early age, which could suggest that growing unemployment and an uncertain economic climate could be doing this.

On average, nearly two-thirds of Brits (62 per cent) feel financially grown up by the time they were 26 years old.

Getting their first job was found to be the number one life stage at which most Brits started to feel financially responsible (29 per cent), placing marriage (14 per cent) into second place, with leaving full-time education (13 per cent) third.

These figures support the earlier findings of the report, which showed the younger generation leading the way when it comes to planning for the future. By the time Brits hit their mid-30s nearly half (48 per cent) say that they like to plan what their lives will look like, compared to just a third (31 per cent) of those aged 35 and above.

These future plans are clearly weighing on their minds, with half (50 per cent) of 18-34 year olds already worried that they haven’t spent enough time planning for retirement.

But there are some Brits that are happy to retain their youthful lifestyles, as 14 per cent of all adults surveyed still don’t feel like a grown up. Some believed they would finally reach this stage upon having children (12 per cent), or buying their first house (7 per cent).

Catherine Stewart, savings expert at Scottish Widows said: “As a nation we appear to be reluctant to take on the roles and responsibilities that adulthood brings and almost putting them off until we feel “grown up”.

“However, when it comes to finances we are taking on the full burden of responsibility at an earlier age. In the current economic climate it’s hardly surprising that we have all had to adopt a more mature approach to handling our finances, meaning we actually grow up faster than we think.

“What’s most important is that no-one feels that they have to deal with all these financial burdens alone. The first step is to speak to a financial expert, who will help you plan your future financial goals.”