Rising cost of living ‘may lead more parents to charge adult children rent’

A survey finds that the rising cost of living may mean that more parents with adult children living with them start charging them for ‘bed and board’.

According to TopCashback, more than half (52%) of parents with children ages 18 to 30 living at home don’t charge rent.

But with the cost of living on the rise, nearly a third (32%) of parents who don’t currently charge for a bed and dorm think they may need to join the 48% of parents who do.

Seven in 10 (71%) of those who charge their adult children do not link these payments to specific bills.

But some ask their adult children to contribute specifically to bills, such as electricity, gas or broadband.

Parents who still help their adult children financially, mainly through necessity, face a double burden.

Adam Pollock, TopCashback

“It is indeed a difficult time for people struggling with the cost of living crisis and huge energy bills,” said Adam Pollock, UK director of TopCashback.

ONS figures released on Wednesday showed that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) accelerated to 10.4% in February from 10.1% in January.

The sudden jump in inflation came after food and non-alcoholic beverage prices rose 18% year-on-year last month.

Among those with adult children who are gone, one-fifth (40%) say they support them financially, according to TopCashback.

The survey indicated that those with younger children between the ages of 18 and 19 are particularly likely to provide financial support, but a third (33%) of parents with a child between the ages of 25 and 30 are still helping.

More than half (52%) of those who live with or support their adult children said they have to make significant sacrifices in order to do so, such as reducing unnecessary spending or dipping into savings.

A third (34%) of parents said that if costs continue to rise, they will have to ask for more rent or lower the amount of support for their children.

Thirty-four percent of parents who provide financial support believe that it is impossible for their children to survive without their support.

Mr Pollock added: “The cost of living crisis is hitting all of us hard right now.

“But parents who still help their children financially, mainly through necessity, face a double burden as their children’s cost of living also rises.”

TopCashback research was conducted by Opinium Research among 2,000 parents with children between the ages of 18 and 30 in March 2023.

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