A poll of 2,000 adults found 60 per cent of 25-34-year-olds believe the rising cost of living has made it more financially difficult for them than older age groups.
And 48 per cent of young adults are using credit and finance options more than they did 12 months ago, compared to just 24 per cent of those aged 55-64.
Only 28 per cent of 25-34-year-olds pay the full amount right away when purchasing new items, instead relying on deposits and finance, whereas 73 per cent of 55-64 year olds pay in one go.
Bills, food and rent are the three biggest outgoings for young people every month.
But only 17 per cent of 25-34-year-olds have money to spare at the end of the month, compared to 64 per cent of people aged 55-64.
Anita Naik, savings expert at VoucherCodes, which commissioned the research to launch a competition for someone to win an entire rent-free summer, said: “Life has suddenly become more expensive for all of us.
"It can be particularly difficult for young people to cope with this change – especially if they haven’t been financially independent for long, as it’s now trickier for them to balance investing in the future with enjoying the present.
“Collecting vouchers from newspapers and magazines used to be the norm for older generations.
"But it may surprise people to hear discount vouchers can still help people make significant savings nowadays, so finance and credit don't have to be the only options for young people to obtain the things they want and need.”
In the current climate, financial security is a worry for younger generations, with the top concerns named as being able to retire (42 per cent), having substantial savings (42 per cent) and getting on the property ladder (40 per cent).
In contrast, the most significant worry for 55-64-year-olds was being able to afford nice holidays (26 per cent), with 37 per cent admitting they didn’t worry about their financial future at all.
A rent-free summer
It also emerged cars (33 per cent), furniture (27 per cent) and mobile phones (28 per cent) are the most common items people are likely to buy on finance or credit.
TVs (25 per cent), accommodation (25 per cent) and devices such as tablets and laptops (25 per cent) also featured high on the list.
A fifth went as far as to say most of the things they own are now rented or purchased through finance in a bid to have items they would otherwise be unable to afford.
The study, carried out via OnePoll, also found 36 per cent of adults think it’s impossible for a single person to buy a property in the current climate – with 25-34-year-olds the biggest believers of this (50 per cent).
Anita Naik added: “Every generation should be able to live their best life this summer and we’re passionate about helping millennials with their biggest expense.
“This is why we’re launching our ‘Who Wants to be a Millennial-aire?’ competition, giving one lucky entrant the chance to win an entire rent-free summer, as well as other summer goodies."