If you've been feeling the pinch lately, more prosperous times may be ahead as new research reveals that the average Brit reaches their 'financial peak' at 48.
Despite feeling their most content at 38 years old, it's in their late forties that Brits have the greatest financial worth. The average 48 year old is worth £52,587 compared to 35 year olds, who are worth on average, £44,081.
However, although people are sitting on a fortune, they grossly underestimate their assets by nearly £15,000. The study by More Than Insurance found that 48 year olds thought they were sitting on £21,477 but in fact, according to the Centre of Economics and Business Research, the average was more like £35,414.
So, why do we reach a financial peak at 48?
"This is a key time for a few reasons - most people are probably at a more senior level in their career and earning more than ever before. The kids have hopefully gone to college and, in theory, earning their own money," Trisha Doyle, editor of AOL Money told Huffington Post.
"For the first time for many parents, they have money in their pockets and no kids around to spend it on, so they can finally take some time to indulge their own interests, which is why big purchases of high spec cameras, home gyms and iPads make a lot of sense."
This would explain why it's not worldly antiques or family heirlooms that tally up the cost - it is various collections of techno gadgets and wardrobe items that are valued as the most expensive, with one in ten valuing their clothes as £2,500.
But the study also found that you should enjoy the financial glory period while it lasts, because by the time we reach 50 years old, the value of our belongings begin to decline.
"Once you hit 50, you're entering what will probably be the final decade of your career," explains Doyle. "Your earnings will probably have plateaued and the handouts for your children's big purchases such as house deposits will start to begin."
So how can you avoid financial decline once your peak is over?
"The worst nightmare for anyone who has worked their whole life is to end up in a situation where you have to scrimp and save when retirement comes around, so future planning is crucial. To do a little number crunching, the state pension pays just £102.15, which on retirement will leave you with just over £400 a month to play with," explains Doyle.
"How does that weigh up against your current outgoings? My bet is it's a long way off and will barely cover your essentials. My best advice would be to look at how much you need to live on, and how much you'd like to live on with luxuries like holidays included. On the current state pension, the retirement dream in the Bahamas or a holiday home in Provence would be almost impossible. So get pension planning now!"