More than 75% of parents fund adult children

High deposits needed to buy a home have resulted in more parents helping their children on to the property ladder. Picture: Robert Perry
High deposits needed to buy a home have resulted in more parents helping their children on to the property ladder. Picture: Robert Perry
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ONE in ten parents is paying out more than £50,000 to fund the lifestyles of their adult children, a report has claimed.

Parents who have already seen their offspring through full-time education and who are approaching retirement themselves are forking out for luxuries such as entertainment and new clothes – as well as essentials including housing and food costs – for their children.

More than three-quarters of parents polled said they still heavily subsidised their adult children – with almost half admitting they had handed over at least £15,000. A further three in ten had given their children double that amount since they reached adulthood.

The expenditure comes on top of the cost of raising a child from birth to adulthood, which the Child Poverty Action Group recently estimated at almost £150,000.

Recent reports have also suggested the “Bank of Mum and Dad” is a huge factor for young people starting out on the property ladder.

“Every parent wants the best for their children and few ever begrudge them a penny,” said Steve Wilkie, managing director of broker Responsible Equity Release, which carried out the report. “But our research shows that, for many parents, the financial commitment extends well beyond the day when their children fly the nest.

“These days it’s harder than ever for young people to reach financial independence. The rising cost of living and the large deposits demanded by mortgage lenders are all expenses that young adults struggle to meet alone. As a result, the Bank of Mum and Dad is funding more aspects of children’s lives, and for longer.”

While two-thirds of parents said they have subsidised their children’s housing costs in some way, a further one in ten said they had helped out with a deposit for a house purchase.

A further six in ten have allowed their children to live with them rent-free at least once since they left education, while more than a third of adult children living with their parents have done so for a year or more, and eight per cent have been there for more than three years.

The research also found that around 10 per cent of parents have helped fund their children’s holidays by more than £2,000. Almost three-quarters of parents admit that they have spent more than £2,000 on clothes for their adult children.

Just one in five parents said they expect their children to pay back any of the money given to them, the report found.

Almost four in ten said they did expect repayment, but concede it is unlikely.

Paul Crayston, spokesman for the Money Advice Trust Scotland, said: “There is a high level of youth unemployment at the moment which means more young people are turning to their parents for help. A big part of this is asking for help to get on the property market.”