08 February 2017

How we spend our time and money today

The average British family wakes up at 7am and goes to bed at 10pm; but what happens in between, and how much does it cost in time and money?

A survey of 2,000 British families with at least one child under 18 found some surprising and heartening results. Two thirds of you are married with two kids. You live in a house with three bedrooms and two toilets, and enjoy an annual family holiday. 

So, life seems to be rosy for most of you. Especially after piling the kids and the dog into the Ford Focus, the most popular pet and car, for your family day out.

Great british family infographic
Great british family infographic
Great british family infographic

The day today

After seven hours of sleep, which probably doesn't feel like long enough, and working for six hours, which no doubt feels longer, there’s only time for six hours a week of pure family time. Then 43% of you are feeling guilty about not spending enough time with your children. Getting the right work-life balance is an ongoing challenge.

Home comforts

This is where the greatest changes in life today have happened. The modern home is now a digital playground. An average of 2 TVs, 2 laptops, 2 tablets, 3 phones and, inevitably, 2 game consoles (with a combined cost of £2,700) are now the norm. 

They’re also the reason why 16% of you find prising them away from the clutches of little fingers the worst part of being a parent.

Keeping a roof over our heads

The cost of owning or renting a home is still the biggest expense for British families. But owning your own home through a mortgage continues to be the overwhelming desire for 54% of you. 

Savings and debt are, unfortunately, a little too close for comfort. Most families have less than £1,000 standing between what they owe and what they’ve saved for a rainy day. 

Making ends meet

Family life and household finance have always been at the centre of British life and never more so than now. Spending habits have changed, with electronic devices now having a huge impact on your family finances, but it’s reassuring that nine out of ten families are happy with their lot. 

But money is always significant, so though time may well fly it’s important to make sure that your money sticks around and works for you and your family.


Making time to budget household finances is important. Our budget calculator is a useful tool that can give you an idea of your financial position.

Research conducted by OnePoll for Nationwide, with a sample of 2000 parents with at least one child aged 0-18 living at home with them.

The content displayed on our recent news and articles page is for information purposes only, and is accurate at the time of publication. The information will not be maintained, and so we cannot guarantee that at any given time the information will be up to date or complete. Please verify any information you take before relying on it.

Nationwide is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites. Nationwide does not make any recommendation or endorse any advertising, products, services or other content on such external websites. Views expressed on third party websites are those of the public and unless specifically stated, are not those of Nationwide.

Most popular

Alfred’s story


We're taking a look back at our first ever mortgage customer in 1884, Mr Alfred Idle.

You may also be interested in...

Our helpful guides

We've created a range of helpful guides to help you make better financial decisions regardless of your circumstances. Find out more about owning property, growing wealth and planning for life events.

Our products

Whether you are after a current account, a savings account or even looking for a mortgage, Nationwide has a range of great products that could help you, no matter the situation.