• 52% of grandparents in the UK are giving money to children and / or grandchildren, costing them an average £571 a year
  • 54% of over 55s have given a one-off lump sum to a family member
  • But it comes at a price with 35% of grandparents making sacrifices to fund their families
  • 42% of grandparents giving more than five hours a week for free to help with activities such as child minding

More than half (52%) of grandparents in the UK are giving money to families, costing them on average £571 a year. This is according to new research1 by Homewise, the over-60s property experts, which also revealed that 54% of over 55s have given a one-off lump sum to a family member over the past five years. One in seven (14%) of those that have given a lump sum to a family member, have given more than £10,000.

Grandparents in the North East are the most generous – two in three (66%) have given away money to children and grandchildren – the highest number in the UK. 63% of grandparents in the North West have given money while in the West Midlands the figure was 58%.

The generosity costs however – more than a third (35%) of grandparents have had to make sacrifices in order to fund families. Nearly six out of 10 (59%) have cut down on socialising while a quarter (24%) of grandparents do not go on holidays and a fifth (20%) go on less holidays.

Their homes are feeling the strain – 18% have postponed or cancelled refurbishment work on their home while the same percentage have had to cut food bills in order to help children and / or grandchildren.

Homewise’s research also revealed that grandparents are not just sacrificing money but also their own time in order to help out family members. Indeed more than two in five (42%) grandparents are sacrificing more than five hours a week for free to help family members with activities such as child minding.

Its study has highlighted the often selfless sacrifices made by so many grandparents in the UK. Through its Home for Life Plan, which enables over-60s to buy homes at discounts of up to 59%, Homewise is aiming to revolutionise the way people approach retirement, avoiding being stuck in unsuitable housing with unmanageable repayments and instead allow them to retire happy.

Mark Neal, Managing Director at Homewise, said: “Our research reveals the extent to which grandparents in the UK are being relied upon for money and time by children and grandchildren.

“Helping family is important to many but it is worrying if they are suffering as a result. Far too many people in retirement are stuck in unsuitable housing and having to scrimp and save.

“We believe that the Home for Life plan can help by enabling over-60s to move to a new home under a lifetime lease and release money to not only clear any debts but also allow those in retirement to live happily.”

Do you give money to your children and/ or grandchildren on a monthly basis?
North East66%
North West63%
West Midlands58%
Northern Ireland55%
East Midlands53%
Yorkshire and the Humber52%
South East48%
South West39%

Source: Homewise (June 2016)

The Home for Life Plan is a lifetime lease where those aged 60 or above can select a property to buy which is then purchased by Homewise at the full price. Customers will then buy a lifetime lease from Homewise typically at a discount rate of around 33%.

Legally, they are the lifetime owner of the property and can do as they wish – paint, wallpaper or put in a new kitchen. When that person dies the property will revert to Homewise but he or she can choose to leave an inheritance of up to 50% of the future of value of the home.