Younger borrowers bring access to loans in question as 78% see applications rejected

LONDON, 5 MARCH 2024: As consumers continue to navigate cost-of-living pressures, new research shows that younger age groups face significant barriers when it comes to accessing credit.

This is according to a survey of 1,000 UK borrowers by Tink, the market-leading payment services and data enrichment platform. It found that over three quarters (78%) of 18-34 year olds have had a loan application rejected. When asked why they’d been disqualified from a loan, 12% cited thin credit history (e.g. not having enough credit history to qualify) and 11% noted the inability to prove their financial history.

Cumbersome processes causing loan application abandonment

Tink’s insights also show that younger age groups abandoning arduous applications, suggesting they have zero tolerance for friction-filled processes and may not be capitalising on the financial services available to them. 

The research shows that nearly a quarter (22%) of 18-34 year olds have abandoned a loan application and used a different lender because the process was too cumbersome.What's more, when applying for a loan, 20% of respondents said they had the correct documents, but abandoned the process because they needed to submit them manually (e.g. had to print them off and post them).

A Tink survey of 200 UK lenders supports these findings, with research showing that 36% of lenders cite manual income verification as the point when they see the most drop off in the loan application process. 

Similarly, the research suggests that cumbersome manual processes can be costly and time consuming for lenders. 32% of lenders surveyed cite manual income verification as the most time consuming step in their own risk decisioning process, and a quarter (25%) say document validation (capturing application information and analysing its authenticity) is the highest cost they face. 

Appetite for data-driven decision making 

As a solution to overcome these barriers, younger age groups cite a willingness to give lenders permission to view transaction data from their bank accounts in return for smoother application processes and a better chance of securing a loan. 

For example, encouragingly 40% of 18-34 year olds surveyed would enable lenders to digitally view transaction data from bank accounts to improve the application process (e.g. remove the need to manually submit documents on income and expenditure), while over half (57%) would like the option of having loans tailored to their financial situation (e.g. repayment plans which adapt to their monthly incomings and outgoings).

What's more, the research highlights that lenders recognise that improving the loan application process makes sound business sense. More than three quarters (78%) of lenders surveyed agree it’s important to reduce friction in the lending application to give them a competitive advantage, while 77% say it’s crucial to improve risk decisioning models to give a more accurate view of people’s finances.

Jack Spiers, Banking & Lending Director at Tink comments; “Our research highlights a clear access issue amongst younger generations trying to borrow. Not only are a significant amount wrestling with cumbersome application processes, they’re also being rejected for loans based on factors that suggest blinkered financial assessments. 

“It is important lenders are harnessing data-driven risk decisioning solutions to offer fair, accurate affordability checks, while also removing the friction associated with manual application submissions. And it’s not just benefiting the end user. Adopting these models can help lenders too - boosting customer acquisition through improved success rates, while reducing operational costs.” 

- ENDS -

Notes to editor: 

Consumer research was conducted by Censuswide on behalf of Tink in September 2023, amongst 1,000 UK borrowers aged over 18  (i.e. those who currently have either a mortgage or a loan).

Lender research was conducted by Censuswide on behalf of Tink in September 2023 amongst 200 executives at a High street bank, Building society, Challenger bank, Payday lender or BNPL lender who have a decision-making role in the lending process.

About Tink

Tink is a market-leading payment services and data enrichment platform. Through more than 6,000 connections to banks, Tink provides payments, banking, and lending solutions that power the new world of finance – whether that’s making account-to-account payments, onboarding new users, making better risk decisions or creating engaging money management tools. A wholly owned subsidiary of Visa, Tink was founded in Stockholm in 2012 as a pioneer of open banking.

Today, Tink is present in 19 markets with an enhanced fintech platform that goes beyond its open banking beginnings, to serve many of the world’s largest financial institutions. Tink enables its partners to take processes that are filled with friction and replace them with data-driven experiences that helps eliminate complexity for millions of consumers across the globe. For more information visit

Contact details:

Linda Winder, PR & Communications Director,, +44 (0)7809 265941