We're all familiar with the Bank of Mum and Dad, but recent research by OneFamily shows that they're not the only ones in the family providing financial support, with their survey showing that 68% of British adults have supported their families financially in one way or another. While 20% said that it's only the older generation that supports the younger one, 13% say their family supports one another financially across the generations and 33% say everyone helps everyone else out as and when it's needed.
Who gives and who gets?
Mums still take the lead in financial support, with 55% of mothers having provided financial support compared with 46% of fathers. After them come the grandparents (with 13% of grandmothers and 9% of grandfathers providing support), followed by brothers (8%) and sisters (7%). Only 4% of daughters and 3% of sons say they've provided financial support.
In contrast, sons have received the most support (at 28%) followed by daughters (25%). Mothers and fathers receive 19% and 11% respectively, while siblings receive 14%. Only 1% of grandmothers require help, with no grandfathers reporting any help with their finances. Breaking the figures down into age groups reveals that 25-34 year-olds are at the top of the list with 85% of those surveyed admitting to receiving financial help, followed by 81% of 35-44 year-olds, 80% of 18-24 year-olds and 74% of those aged 45-54.
Where does it go?
Worryingly, almost half (48%) of adults are now having to rely on various family members for help with everyday living costs. This figure rises to 51% for 18-24 year-olds, who need the most help to get started with covering their everyday expenses.
In contrast, only 17% across all age groups require help with the cost of education/training or the purchase of a car. A further 15% of people reported family support when buying a house, while 14% of support goes to help with a holiday, 11% to wedding assistance, 5% to the birth of a new generation, and 2% to help with funeral costs. These statistics are in line with age distributions, since a lot of financial support is given for big life events that tend to take place around the age of 30.
Further will to help
Nearly a quarter (24%) said that they would help their family more if they could, but only the same percentage say they've currently got enough to meet their family's future needs, with 40% saying they don't have enough saved up to be able to help as much as they would want. People are keen to do as much as they can, however, with 40% saying they would even dip into their savings pot to help a family member.
OneFamily concluded its report by calling on the Government to provide more incentives to support family savings. Karl Elliott, marketing director at OneFamily, stated: "Many people would like to help their families even more than they do and over half (51%) said that they would be more likely to save money for a family member if there was a Government-funded incentive to boost the value of what they put in. OneFamily hopes that the Government's Help to Save Scheme, announced in the Chancellor's Budget in March, will give families the help they need to be able to support each other more and secure their financial futures."
Until this scheme is a reality, however, it is up to us to find the top savings rates and put as much money away as we can afford in order to be able to help where we can. This might not be so easy at the moment, with many people struggling to save, which is why it is more important than ever to do your research. On the other side of it, it may be worth considering a Junior ISA so that your own children won't have to depend too heavily on you for help in their young adult lives.
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