Quarter of parents feel under pressure to help their children financially

22 April 2016

A quarter of parents in Scotland feel under pressure to help their children financially, according to Bank of Scotland’s latest How Scotland Lives research. Parents are feeling the pressure to help pay university or higher education costs, repaying debt and costs towards buying a home.

When it comes to their children buying a home, it’s the younger parents who are conscious of their childrens’ financial futures. Just over one in ten (12%) parents aged 25-34 are looking ahead to the future and already feeling pressurised to help their children out with costs towards buying a house. Dundee is the area in Scotland where parents are feeling the most pressure (13%) to help their children with costs towards buying a house, followed by North East Scotland and Mid-Scotland (both 9%).

Worryingly a fifth (21%) of parents believe their children will need substantial financial support for them to ever be able to buy their own home. A third of 35 to 44 year olds and over a third (36%) of 25 to 34 year old parents believe they will need to heavily subsidise their child’s house purchase in the future. This outlook is felt most by those living in Glasgow (31%), followed by those in the Highlands and Islands (26%) and the Lothians (25%).

Almost a fifth (18%) of Fifers are concerned as they believe that their children will never buy their own home, followed by 15% of Aberdonians and 14% of parents in North East Scotland. More parents in South Scotland (17%), Glasgow (16%) and Aberdeen (15%) than anywhere else think it’s normal now that their children’s generation will never buy their own home.

A fifth (20%) of parents aged 45-54 and 35-44 (22%) feel under pressure to help their children with university or higher education costs, while those living in Dundee are feeling this pressure more than any other area in Scotland (19%), followed by North East Scotland (16%). Parents as young as 25-34 years of age are already thinking ahead to when their child may go to university or further education and many (15%) are feeling the pressure to help financially, despite this possibly being a few years away yet.

Nicola Noble, mortgage director at Bank of Scotland said, “As their children struggle to be financially independent, more parents are now feeling under pressure to help by providing money towards university or higher education costs, repaying debt or buying a home. The younger parents especially, are already feeling very pessimistic about their children ever being able to buy a house without them providing substantial financial support.”