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The Generous Generation

11 November 2018

The over-55s are firmly established as the generous generation with more than three out of four homeowners (76%) looking to help their children financially   and more than one in five helping out grandchildren (22%), new research* from the UK’s leading independent equity release adviser Key shows.
 
Average handouts for their children are nearly £17,000 while the lucky grandchildren can look forward to average £11,300 in pre-inheritance, Key’s study found.
 
Its research among homeowners aged 55-plus found nearly half (46%) have already helped children while another 30% plan to do so. That equates to around 8.6 million homeowners helping out families.
 
The study found around 4% have also made financial gifts to grandchildren and another 18% plan to do so – the equivalent of around 2.5 million homeowners aged 55 and over.
 
The money is being given to help with a range of financial needs ranging from house deposits to paying off debts.
 
Regional Focus:
Homeowners in the North East lead the way in generosity to children with 94% having already given or planning to give while the grandchildren of homeowners in London are the most likely to receive financial help with one in three (34%) expecting to give cash.
 The tables below show the picture across the country for gifting to children and to grandchildren.
HELPING THE CHILDREN

REGION HOW MANY HAVE ALREADY THEIR HELPED CHILDREN? HOW MANY PLAN TO HELP THEIR CHILDREN? TOTAL
North East 56% 38% 94%
London 43% 43% 86%
Wales 53% 32% 85%
South West 52% 31% 83%
Scotland 43% 29% 72%
West Midlands 47% 34% 81%
South East 40% 35% 75%
East Midlands 53% 19% 72%
Yorkshire & Humberside 48% 22% 70%
North West 47% 20% 67%
East Anglia 37% 29% 66%
GREAT BRITAIN 46% 30% 76%
 
 
 
REGION HOW MANY HAVE HELPED THEIR GRANDCHILDREN? HOW MANY PLAN TO HELP THEIR GRANDCHILDREN? TOTAL
London 4% 30% 34%
West Midlands 8% 24% 32%
North East 7% 24% 31%
Scotland 7% 16% 23%
North West 4% 18% 22%
South West 2% 20% 22%
South East 4% 17% 21%
East Midlands 4% 15% 19%
Yorkshire & Humberside 2% 15% 17%
East Anglia 4% 11% 15%
Wales 4% 9% 13%
GREAT BRITAIN 4% 18% 22%
Will Hale CEO at Key said: “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.
 
“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.”
 

Key’s research found 78% of over-55s are worried that by gifting now they might run into financial trouble themselves in later life while 76% are worried about the possible tax implications.
 

Page last updated: Monday 14 October 2019