Update: this post was written a couple of days ago, before today’s good news about the 1% growth in GDP for the last quarter. So please bear this in mind when you read it!

Born Bankrupt, a programme made by Sky, was shown again on Monday night. I missed it the first time and so made the effort to watch it this time. Before I get into my stride, these are some of the eye-watering facts the programme explains:

  • The country pays £46bn PER YEAR in interest on the state debt.
  • Current state debt stands at +£1TRILLION – set to rise to £1.4tn
  • We spend £7bn more on debt interest per year than we do on defence
  • The average age of the first time buyer is now 37
  • The average house price is over £160,000. Most mortgages now are based on 3x wages. Average wage is just £26,000. See the problem?
  • Based on today’s average pensions takings, the mid-20’s generations pension pots will have to be over £400,000!
  • The baby boomer generation has proportionally the most wealth – but has also been the most greedy with it and created the most debt.
  • The value of a University degree is now worth almost nothing due to previous Govt’s loans and large number of Uni places.
  • Average student debt is nearing £54,000.

Now they are seriously worrying facts. What is depressing is that the state has that much debt, that the interest we pay on it far outweighs the amount we spend on this country’s defence! Talk about not getting your priorities right!

Now I am 23 years of age, approaching 24 in December. The average age of the first time buyer of a property has now rocketed to 37. So in theory, if I was to go by averages, I would have to spend the next 13 years at home before I could afford to move out! The average house price in this country is now over £160,000. The average wage is just £26,000. Wages have not risen anywhere near in line with the sky high prices of property. And here’s the clincher, due to the credit crunch, the average mortgage is now based on just 3x your average salary. 3 x £26,000 only equals £78,000. So, can anyone tell me if they know a twenty-something with a £82,000 deposit! Yeah, no one. Thought so.

What can I say about pensions? There isn’t much to say is there, other than that the whole system is probably ruined beyond all repair and there’s very little we can do about it!

The University degree thing was an interesting take. The programme explained that because of the readily available loans for students from previous Governments and the rapidly increasing number of places, the value of a degree has hit rock bottom. The average debt a student comes out with now has risen to a staggering £54,000! Now here’s my gripe with the University system; our country has for years encourage as many people as possible to go to Uni. But while the intention is good, in theory it just simply cannot work like that. Flood the jobs market with graduates in a depressed economy and there is going to be very few who lands a job in the sector they studied in. Waste of time, waste of money. A lot of my friends went to University, and are now working in less than favourable jobs in areas they never studied in. Why does this country have such an immense focus on University. If you don’t go, it’s not the end of the world! We need to have such an energetic focus on the people that choose to leave school at 16 or 18 and choose to go into the honorable world of work as we do for those that do go on to Uni! Not shamed for not trying to get into University.

I think it’s time to get back to a more measured approach when it comes to University places and funding. There just simply isn’t enough room for the thousands and thousands of graduates we are pumping out every year. The market isn’t there for them at the end, so lets just slam the breaks on a bit.

Don’t get me wrong, if you’re planning to become a teacher, nurse, doctor, lawyer, solicitor or any other highly sought after profession, then yes, Uni is a good idea. However, there are many rich people in this country who have made a lot of themselves who didn’t go to Uni. Anyway, that’s my rant over about that particular subject…

Born Bankrupt alluded to the fact that it is the baby boomers, those born between 1945 and 1965, that have proportionally the most wealth in the UK, but have also spent the most and racked up the most debt. So to all you mid-40 years olds and above, a very sarcastic ‘thanks a lot’ goes out to you! The baby boomer generation lived way beyond it’s means and the twenty-somethings are now picking up the tab, setting back their growth as a generation for years to come!

It’s time to get the country back to spending what it can afford and nothing more. No more excessive borrowing. No more hugely deep spending cuts which aren’t helping things either. What ever happened to: “if you can’t afford it, don’t spend it”? Don’t rely on the plastic to get you buy. My grandad would have never have done that!