UK: One in five UK adults doesn't know how to boil an egg
13 Apr 2017
- Aviva research finds home skills gap amongst UK householders
- One in five UK adults aren’t confident changing a light bulb
- Almost half of UK adults under 35 can’t cook a meal without using a recipe
- Four out of 10 under-25s turn to the internet to learn DIY skills
Millions of householders admit to struggling with even some of the most basic household tasks, according to a new study from insurer Aviva. Research carried out as part of Aviva’s latest ‘Home’ report discovered one in five people aren’t confident changing a light bulb (21%) while a similar number (19%) admit they don’t know how to boil an egg.
Almost a third (31%) of people would not be comfortable cooking a complete meal without a recipe, and more than four in 10 (43%) say they couldn’t change a baby’s nappy. The skills gap grows even bigger when it comes to changing a flat tyre – 63% wouldn’t know how to do this – while 70% wouldn’t feel confident changing a washer on a tap.
The full list of household tasks is revealed as follows:
|Percentage who feel confident doing this task|
|Boil an egg||81%|
|Change a light bulb||79%|
|Cook a complete meal without using a recipe||69%|
|Read a map||66%|
|Sew on a button||65%|
|Unblock a sink||62%|
|Remove a stain from a carpet or clothing||59%|
|Change a baby's nappy||57%|
|Wire a plug||57%|
|‘Bleed' a radiator||53%|
|Check oil levels in a car||53%|
|Put up a shelf||47%|
|Put up wallpaper||39%|
|Change a flat tyre||37%|
|Change a washer on a tap||30%|
However, 96% of UK adults say they’re confident doing at least some of these household tasks, so there could be an element of sticking to what we know.
Mum and Dad vs the web: who teaches ‘how to’?
When it comes to learning DIY skills, the most popular way is by trial and error, with half of people (50%) saying they have learned some skills this way. This is closely followed by family members passing down their knowledge - 45% of adults have picked up skills from their dads, and 35% from their mums.
However, Aviva also found that four out of 10 adults aged under 25 turn to the internet to aid their DIY skills - more than twice the number in this age group who have used a traditional book or guide.
In contrast, books and DIY manuals have aided nearly a quarter (23%) of people aged 55+, but just 11% of people aged 25-34.
|Where people have picked up household DIY skills||Percentage who learned this way|
|I taught myself (trial and error)||50%|
|I was taught by my dad||45%|
|I was taught by my mum||35%|
|I learned via the internet e.g. ‘how to’ videos||20%|
|I learned through books / DIY manuals||17%|
|I learned through work||16%|
|I was taught by another family member / friend||15%|
|I learned at school||15%|
|I learned by watching TV||12%|
|I learned by asking experts||8%|
Adam Beckett, Propositions Director for Aviva UK says: “As a nation we tend to take pride in our ability to do things ourselves in and around the home, so it’s a surprise to see there could be a skills gap in places! That said, we also know that people lead busy lives, so while we enjoy doing things ourselves, we also appreciate the opportunity to leave things to a professional from time to time, particularly with some of the more challenging jobs.
“Home emergency cover can be a great way to know someone is on hand for some of the trickier tasks such as unblocking a sink or dealing with a leaky tap. So if something does go wrong, we don’t necessarily have to resort to doing it ourselves. Although when it comes to boiling an egg, it may be time to turn pick up a cookery book!”
Aviva Response home emergency cover provides customers with peace of mind that their heating, plumbing and electrics are covered in the event of a breakdown or accidental damage. To find out more visit www.aviva.co.uk/response
Notes to editors:
If you are a journalist and would like further information, please contact:
Aviva Press Office: Sarah Poulter, 01904 452 828 / 07800 691569, firstname.lastname@example.org
All results relate to research commissioned by Aviva and carried out by Censuswide research in February / March 2017 unless stated otherwise. 2004 adults from across the UK were interviewed about their habits and roles around the home.
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