Direct Line Insurance Group plc

06/16/2021 | Press release | Archived content

More than six million Brits would choose mortgage over marriage

More than six million Brits would choose mortgage over marriage

4min read
16 Jun 2021
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  • 76 per cent of Brits think getting on the property ladder is more important than getting married
  • The average combined cost of getting married and First Time Buyer deposit in UK is £80,000
  • 1.7 million adults regret spending the amount they did on their wedding day

New research1 from Direct Line Life Insurance reveals 6.3 million UK adults (12 per cent) believe getting a mortgage is more important than getting married.

Over 40 million people (76 per cent) think buying a home is an important life goal but 64 per cent (34 million) view marriage the same way. While the former is of equal importance to men (77 per cent) and women (76 per cent), getting married is slightly more important to women (68 per cent) than to men (61 per cent).

In the UK, around five per cent of those who have been married prioritised buying a property over having a wedding, while around three per cent delayed buying a property so they could have the perfect wedding day. With the average cost of doing both exceeding £80,0002, it is no wonder people feel the need to prioritise one over the other.

The average age to get married currently stands at 37, when the typical salary is £32,700. On this salary, couples would need to save 10 per cent of their salary for 15-years to be able to fully fund both a wedding and a mortgage.

With the pressure of social media and the desire to put on a day like no one else before, it is no wonder the average cost of a wedding in the UK is currently £32,000. The cost of property also continues to soar, and hopeful first-time buyers have to save a deposit of £48,500.

While at the time weddings might seem like the most important day of a couple's life, 1.7 million adults (six per cent) regret spending the amount they did on their big day and admit to going over budget.

To cover the unplanned additional money, two million people (23 per cent) had to dip into savings set aside to buy a property, while a quarter (25 per cent or 2.2 million) had help from family members. In fact, £122 billion has been given to couples by family and friends to help with wedding costs across the UK.

Vincent Guadagnino, Communications Manager at Direct Line Life Insurance, commented: 'Before the pandemic the cost of getting married was extremely high and our research shows that this looks set to continue, especially when large celebrations are allowed again later this year.

'With the cost of a wedding and a deposit both extremely high, it's no wonder so many couples have to choose between their perfect day and their dream of owning a home. Both are really important milestones and we understand it must be a difficult decision to make. Whether getting married or buying a property, both involve long term commitments so it's important to consider your protection needs to ensure you have the right cover in place should anything happen.'

Regionally, those getting married in the South West will get more for their money as the cost of a wedding in this area is £28,000, while people in London need to fork out nearly £40,000. However, with lowest house deposits (£28,000) needed in the North East, this is the cheapest area to have it all with the combined cost of a wedding (£31,000) and first-time buyer deposit being £59,000. London once again tops the list for biggest house deposit of almost £100,000, making the cost of having both in the capital a staggering £140,000.

Table one: Average cost of wedding vs first time buyer deposit regionally in the UK


Average cost of wedding

Average first-time buyer deposit

Combined cost





South East




East of England




South West




West Midlands




East Midlands




Yorkshire and Humberside








North West




Northern Ireland








North East




United Kingdom




Source: Direct Line Life Insurance 2021

For further information please visit

- ENDS -

Notes to Editors

1. Omnibus commissioned among 2,005 UK adults between 1st - 6th April 2021

2. Analysis conducted using a range of sources. Average FTB deposit of 23% courtesy of Halifax (March 2021), while FTB house prices were published by Barrows and Forrester (March 2021). Average salary data taken from the ONS's Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, 2020 (regional data focusing on 30-39 year olds). Wedding cost data taken from Hitched's National Wedding Survey 2019.

For further information please contact:

Chelsey Wheeler

Direct Line Group

Email: c[email protected]

Direct Line

Started in 1985, Direct Line became the first UK insurance company to use the telephone as its main channel of communication. It provides motor, home, travel, pet and life insurance cover direct to customers by phone or on-line.

Direct Line life insurance policies are underwritten by AIG, part of the American International Group UK Limited, registered office: The AIG Building, 58 Fenchurch Street, London EC3M 4AB. American International Group UK Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority (FRN number 781109. You can check the FCA register at or call the FCA on 0800 111 6768.

Customers can find out more about Direct Line products or get a quote by calling 0800 077 8297 or visiting