Friends fall out over loans but keep on borrowingWe hand out millions each year, says survey

14 August 2007

Britons are collectively handing out £510 million in unofficial loans to friends every year, a survey revealed.

One in 10 people either borrow money from a friend or lend money to one each year, with an average amount of £116 changing hands each time, according to high street bank Abbey.

But 28 per cent of people said they had fallen out with a friend over an unpaid debt, with just over a quarter of them seeing a friendship soured by a sum of less than £100.

The main reason people borrowed money from friends was to plug a gap until pay day, cited by 36 per cent, while 26 per cent turned to their friends for cash to pay off personal debts.

Car purchases

Around 7 per cent of people said they had borrowed money from a friend to fund holidays, car purchases or home improvements, 6 per cent turned to friends for cash to fund a business idea, 1 per cent borrowed money to buy a present for their partner and a further 1 per cent asked for cash to cover medical expenses.

Paul Morrish, head of Abbey Loans, said: 'As millions of Britons find that borrowing from or lending money to a friend resulted in the loss of a friendship, we've seen that people can fall out over the smallest amounts of money."

* ICM Research questioned 1,000 people during June.

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