Finance News

Over-55s: The Generous Generation

Rose Jinks - November 22, 2018
  • Three out of four over-55s have either already helped, or plan to help out, their children financially
  • 78% of over-55s are worried that, by gifting now, they might run into financial trouble themselves later down the line
  • More than one in five over-55s will provide cash to grandchildren

Average handouts to children and grandchildren

For children, their parents give out an average of nearly £17,000, whilst grandchildren can expect (before inheritance), on average £11,300, according to a study by Key. The money is thought to be given to help with particularly large financial concerns, such as student debt and housing deposits.

Nearly half (46%) of homeowners over the age of 55 have already helped their children out financially, and another 30% plan on doing so. This equates to about 8.6m homeowners helping out the younger members of their families.

Regional focus

Over-55s in the North East are most generous to children, with 94% of grandparents having helped out, or plan to help out, their offspring. For grandchildren, Londoners are most likely to receive financial help, with a total of 34% either planning to, or have already, helped their grandchildren.

Will Hale, the CEO at Key, comments:The over-55s are truly a generous generation, with many looking to access their housing equity help out their children and grandchildren. Of course, not all over-55s are homeowners and not all can afford to give money, but those who can generally want to.

“Indeed, with more than three out of four planning to help children and one in five helping grandchildren, there is clearly is a real desire amongst this group to support younger generations and a recognition of some of the financial challenges they are facing. Despite recent reports pointing to a growing intergenerational divide, our experience is that families continue to offer financial support when it is needed across the generations.

He continues: “The over-55s have done well out of property wealth growth and many may be benefiting from generous company pension schemes. However, whilst their current financial well-being is enabling them to help out family, there may be worries of over-extending themselves and under-estimating the costs involved in the latter stages of life. Therefore, it is vital that the over-55s seek specialist advice when choosing to access the wealth in their property.”