How much will a lifetime cost you, where will you spend and how will inflation affect that? This is Money podcast

We’ve all felt it, that moment when you look at your bank balance and think ‘I’ve spent how much?’

But what if you looked at an entire lifetime’s worth of spending? What would the damage be and how painful would that number feel?

According to a recent piece of research by Atom Bank, the cost of living an entire near 81-year lifetime in 2021 would be a whopping £1,543,834.

That includes £169,159 spent on children, £266,742 on buying the average house and £69,793 on Christmases.

The bank compared the figures to what the same lifetime would have cost at a 1971 snapshot, with £14,738 on children, £2,371 on the average house, and £4,177 on Christmases.

Beyond highlighting just how much house prices have skyrocketed in 50 years – if they had only kept pace with standard inflation the average home would cost £38,000 – what does this tell us?

Walk of life: An average lifetime will cost more than £1.5million, a report claims

Walk of life: An average lifetime will cost more than £1.5million, a report claims

On this week’s podcast, Georgie Frost, Lee Boyce and Simon Lambert discuss that and why a snapshot like this – vaguely precise as it may be – can help us understand how inflation works and how it can drive up prices.

Lee picks out the inflation across each decade to show that and Atom’s figures that see the cost of the average lifetime rise to £19.2million by 2071 sharpen the mind.

Inflation is looking large again, but Omicron has made it look like a Bank of England interest rate hike may be back off the table this month.

The team discuss that and whether the variant and restrictions to tackle it will cause more economic problems and what those with travel plans can do.

Next up is the Great Resignation – another phenomenon thrust to the foreground by the pandemic – what’s going on, why are people quitting and should you stay or go to get a pay rise and better working conditions?

And finally, is your home hotter than Lanzarote? It’s cold and frosty outside, but inside a surprising number of British homes it’s shorts and t-shirt weather.

Cost of living over time: Average cost of life per person in Britain in 1971, 2021 and 2071, according to Atom Bank

Cost of living over time: Average cost of life per person in Britain in 1971, 2021 and 2071, according to Atom Bank


  • How much will a lifetime cost you – and where will you spend?
  • Is 2022 looking bleak for our finances thanks to soaring inflation?
  • The energy saving battle: What should you do to save cash?
  • What you need to know about the ‘inflation’ Budget
  • Are you willing to pay the price for going green?
  • Are Premium Bonds worth holdingas inflation climbs?
  • From trackers to a 10 year fix: How to win in the mortgage war
  • Should the thundering inflation train lead rates to rise?
  • How bad will the energy crunch get – and will it hit you?
  • Could the inflation spike lead to stagflation?
  • Were the social care tax hike and the triple lock right?
  • Are you a mover, a flipper or a forever-homeowner?
  • Is there a way to boost YOUR state pension?
  • As deliveries boom, could you fall victim to a parcel text scam?
  • How low can mortgage rates go and is it worth jumping ship to fix?
  • Are your energy bills about to soaras the price cap shifts?
  • Do the sums stack up on green home improvements?
  • New plans to tackle bogus ratings online: Can you trust reviews?
  • What links rocketing car hire prices and inflation?
  • Will we pay out on an 8% triple lock pension increase?
  • Underpaid state pension scandal and the future of retirement
  • The stamp duty race to avoid a double false economy
  • Would you invest in sneakers… or the new space race?
  • Is loyalty starting to pay for savers and customers?
  • What goes up must come down? The 18-year property cycle
  • Are you a Premium Bond winner or loser?
  • Is a little bit of inflation really such a bad thing?
  • Holidays abroad are back on… but would you book one?
  • Build up a cash pot then buy and sell your way to profits
  • Are you itching to spend after lockdown or planning to save?
  • Are 95% mortgages to prop up first-time buyers a wise move?
  • Was Coinbase’s listing bitcoin and crypto’s coming of age?
  • Is working from home here to stay and how do you change career?
  • What’s behind the rising tide of financial scams?
  • Hot or not? How to spot a buyer’s or seller’s market
  • How to save or invest in an Isa – and why it’s worth doing
  • Is the UK primed to rebound… and what now for Scottish Mortgage?
  • The ‘escape velocity’ Budget and the £3bn state pension victory
  • Should the stamp duty holiday become a permanent vacation?
  • What happens next to the property market and house prices?
  • The UK has dodged a double-dip recession, so what next?
  • Will you confess your investing mistakes?
  • Should the GameStop frenzy be stopped to protect investors?
  • Should people cash in bitcoin profits or wait for the moon?
  • Is this the answer to pension freedom without the pain?
  • Are investors right to buy British for better times after lockdown?
  • The astonishing year that was 2020… and Christmas taste test
  • Is buy now, pay later bad news or savvy spending?
  • Would a ‘wealth tax’ work in Britain?
  • Is there still time for investors to go bargain hunting?
  • Is Britain ready for electric cars? Driving, charging and buying…
  • Will the vaccine rally and value investing revival continue?
  • How bad will Lockdown 2 be for the UK economy?
  • Is this the end of ‘free’ banking or can it survive?
  • Has the V-shaped recovery turned into a double-dip?
  • Should British investors worry about the US election?
  • Is Boris’s 95% mortgage idea a bad move?
  • Can we keep our lockdown savings habit?
  • Will the Winter Economy Plan save jobs?
  • How to make an offer in a seller’s market and avoid overpaying
  • Could you fall victim to lockdown fraud? How to fight back
  • What’s behind the UK property and US shares lockdown mini-booms?
  • Do you know how your pension is invested?
  • Online supermarket battle intensifies with M&S and Ocado tie-up
  • Is the coronavirus recession better or worse than it looks?
  • Can you make a profit and get your money to do some good?
  • Are negative interest rates off the table and what next for gold?
  • Has the pain in Spain killed off summer holidays this year?
  • How to start investing and grow your wealth
  • Will the Government tinker with capital gains tax?
  • Will a stamp duty cut and Rishi’s rescue plan be enough?
  • The self-employed excluded from the coronavirus rescue
  • Has lockdown left you with more to save or struggling?
  • Are banks triggering a mortgage credit crunch?
  • The rise of the lockdown investor – and tips to get started
  • Are electric bikes and scooters the future of getting about?
  • Are we all going on a summer holiday?
  • Could your savings rate turn negative?
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