Young women almost twice as likely to go bankrupt as young men, show government statistics

Young women are now almost twice as likely to go bankrupt as young men.

Insolvency Service data shows 2,406 women under the age of 25 went insolvent in England and Wales last year*, compared to just 1,297 men in the same age group.

A key driver of the disparity in insolvencies among young people is the higher average rents paid by young women. Recent research shows that women pay an average of £276 per year more on rent than men, as men are more likely to live in larger house shares to save money.

Young women are also less likely to save money by living at home with their parents, with ONS data showing one in three young men live at home, compared to just one in five young women.

Jeremy Willmont, Head of Restructuring and Insolvency, says: “The real pressure driving young women into bankruptcy is the cost of housing, which is the single biggest cost for a lot of young people.

“Young people dealing with high rents may end up using credit cards to fund everyday expenses, and eventually that will become unsustainable.

“The idea that young women become bankrupt due to the pressure to live a lavish Kardashian jet set lifestyle has been overplayed.

“But problems over out of control credit card expenditure on consumer goods are a problem in a noticeable minority of these cases.

“The luxury industry has created an incredibly powerful marketing machine aimed at encouraging young women to make big ticket purchases that are beyond most people’s budgets.”

* Year end Dec 31 2014.


Jeremy Willmont