LONDON – Britons go on a spending spree of over £1 trillion-a-year hoping to buy themselves goods that will confer a posh lifestyle on them, says a new research report from Mintel. On an average each British household spends £37,000 each year on home improvement.
The rest of the amount is spent on furniture, cars, holidays and on the newest hi-tech gadgets in the market. Mintel said that spending on non-essential items had jumped by 57 percent over the last decade and 43 percent in real terms after considering the prevailing inflation. The most frivolous spending included exotic holidays, the latest audio players and luxurious furnishings.
Mintel’s British Lifestyles report also says that spending on TVs, mobile phones, stereos, video and DVD players jumped by a whopping 642 percent. Lat year Britons spent £327.5 billion on housing alone. “The £1 trillion mark is a significant milestone in the expansion of the British consumer economy. The last ten years have clearly been the decade of big ticket purchases and buoyant expenditure on these items such as holidays, cars and appliances reflects the growing affluence of the British nation as a whole,” said Paul Rickard, the director of research at Mintel.
The minutest expenditure growth was seen in everyday food items, which grew by only 18 percent in the last decade. Insurance and pensions products saw a 36 percent increase, while net consumer credit hit a high of £23 billion in 2004.
“Our priorities as consumers appear to reside with fashionable ‘must-have’ products like satellite navigation systems, flat-screen TVs and holidays. Compared to a decade ago, we’re living in a society of instant gratification, and more and more of us have the financial means to fund that desire,” Rickard said.