How the Country Really Feels About Brexit

Written by Karen Bryan

brexitBrexit – ‘Britain’s exit’ – means as a country we voted to leave the European Union. Britain no longer has to contribute billions of pounds towards the EU’s budget but this historic vote on Thursday 23 June divided the country. Freedom Finance created a Brexit survey to explore the real impact of the ‘Brex Factor’. What does Brexit mean for our everyday finances? Will it affect the way we holiday? How is Brexit going to affect the property market, pensions and grocery prices? And how is it already influencing the economic decisions we make?

Since the historic Brexit vote there’s been gloom in the markets about the economy and the pound has been losing value in line with the current uncertainty surrounding the UK economy. Despite the fact it will take another two years for the country to experience any real change as a result of our ‘leave’ vote, the falling pound only serves to reinforce the financial unease.

However, recent UK economic data released by the office of national statistics indicates that Britain remains resilient to recession with the recent expansion of GDP. But how do we actually feel about what’s happened since the vote? Are we worried about what the future holds? Our survey has explored the nation’s attitude towards the Brexit vote to see how you’re really feeling.

What the people told us in our Brexit survey

Britain may have swerved the immediate economic impact, but there are still concerns about Britain’s balance of payments deficit and no one can really predict what the future holds. Despite everything, we’re pleased to report that our survey reveals that while worries remain regarding what Brexit means for our financial future, on the whole, the majority of our respondents remain upbeat about Brexit. Our survey indicates that the majority of UK citizens are not worrying about what might happen tomorrow. Real people are telling us there’s no need to worry about their pension pot today if they’re not due to retire for years. And when it comes to holidays abroad, just over half of our respondents told us they won’t alter their travel plans until the UK’s exit is fully negotiated. That’s not to say there aren’t concerns – a quarter of people told us that if weak pound-euro rates push foreign holiday prices they’ll choose to take holidays in the UK. For years now interest rates have been falling and our survey reveals no real concerns about the impact on savings rates. Most respondents are also remaining calm about the price of groceries. However, there are still concerns that a weaker pound could push up the price of electricity and fuel.

There appears to be a very real ‘why worry what might happen?’ slant to our survey results with many respondents identifying opportunities to use the economic uncertainty to their advantage. For example, some respondents see a chance to negotiate a better mortgage deal. And when we asked about how feelings about future job security, it would appear most people feel Brexit will have no real impact on their career.

Carry on Britain

Based on the answers provided by the respondents in our survey – real people expressing real concerns and opinions – the overriding feeling on the nation is that nothing will really change until we actually leave the EU. Even then, we can’t be sure what it means for our finances. But that in itself is making people feel uncertain. But uncertainty doesn’t appear to be having a significant impact on financial decisions, based on survey results. While Britain appears to be staying calm amid this financial uncertainty, our survey does reveal concerns and we understand there may be a change in behaviour when we know what leaving the EU really means.

Freedom to borrow as before Brexit

When it comes to borrowing decisions, our survey reveals most respondents continue to follow the same borrowing advice; taking out a loan as and when required based on favourable borrowing terms. While Brexit appear not to have had a huge impact on attitudes towards borrowing (yet), it always pays to search the market for the right loan deal. Just as before Brexit, the Freedom Finance team are still on hand to help find the best loans to suit all budgets and circumstances.

View Brexit survey infographic here