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47% of the UK Class Themselves as ‘JAMs’


New research from reveals that almost half (47%) of the UK consider themselves to be ‘just about managing’ financially.

The survey of 2,000 adults revealed that 14% had to give up necessities like food and daily travel costs to pay for unexpected expenses, with a further 11% of respondents saying they had to give up holidays and seasonal events like Christmas to pay for unexpected expenses. The survey results highlighted that it takes the average Brit 4 months to pay off their unexpected expenses, however 8% of the UK are still paying after 10 months!

Cities with the highest just about managing households

The nationwide research revealed which areas of the UK are considering themselves to be ‘just about managing’.Coventry top the list, closely followed by Chelmsford. The full list can be seen below:

City Households that consider themselves JAMS
Coventry 70%
Chelmsford 63%
Bristol 58%
Plymouth 58%
Gloucester 55%
Newcastle 53%
Sheffield 53%
Glasgow 51%
Oxford 50%
Southampton 50%
London 49%
Manchester 49%
Cambridge 48%
Aberdeen 47%
Belfast 47%
Wolverhampton 46%
Brighton and Hove 45%
Birmingham 44%
Portsmouth 44%
Leicester 43%
Worcester 43%
Norwich 42%
Liverpool 41%
Edinburgh 39%
Swansea 39%
Leeds 36%
Wrexham 33%
Cardiff 28%

Unexpected expenses troubling Brits

One of the biggest unexpected expenses troubling Brits are cars – costing £226 on average a year in unexpected costs. With 52% of respondents saying they’ve had at least one car related unexpected expense last year and 18% of respondents saying they knew about the issue but left it to get steadily worse.

After general household bills denting another £239 a year in unexpected costs, other expenses that might be smaller but add up throughout the year include:

  • Pets – £80 on average annually
  • Christmas – £93 on average annually
  • Leisure – £97 on average annually

A full breakdown of statistics on unexpected expenses in the UK can be seen at