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The astonishing cost of raising an adult

The Momentum UK Team 21 October 2014

British parents spend an average £32,667 on supporting their children after they've reached adulthood, according to a new study.

While the cost of raising a child continues to rise, a new study by peer-to-peer lending service Zopa has found that children cost their parents over £30,000 on average over early adulthood (between the ages of 18 and 30).

Surprisingly, 44% of parents surveyed in the study admitted they may have to retire later than they had originally planned to help out with the cost of higher education, accommodation, food and cars. The largest of these expenses is university or higher education fees, with parents contributing an average of £5,482 per child. This was closely followed by contributing to house deposits (£5,218), and funding weddings (£4,903 per child). What's more, 71% of parents surveyed said they continued to provide an allowance for their adult children, averaging an additional £3,115 per child.

53% of parents said their adult children had lived at home with them for a year or more, with younger adults (18-25) spending significantly more time at home. However, 68% of these parents made their children pay rent or help with household costs, but the average monthly rent was just £129, well below UK market rental rates.

Of parents approaching retirement age, 55% said they had not considered the additional expenses of raising a child into adulthood when planning financially for the future. 62% of all parents surveyed said they had dipped into their own savings to help them cover the cost, and 52% said they would have saved differently in hindsight. Over 70% said they have had to readjust their lifestyles to accommodate the extra expenditure.

Giles Andrews, CEO and Co-founder of Zopa commented on the findings:

“The cost of raising an adult is having a significant impact on the financial futures of many British parents. Young parents concerned can soften the blow of continuing to support their future adult children through smart financial planning and being savvy with their money.”

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