Adult Kids, Aging Parents Cost Americans $630b

Adult Kids, Aging Parents Cost Americans $630b
Adult Kids, Aging Parents Cost Americans $630b

Although Americans surveyed say providing monetary support to a family member is not a financial struggle, many also maintain high debt levels and have delayed major life milestones to provide this financial assistance.

TD Ameritrade’s 2015 Financial Support survey explores the struggle of Americans in helping a family member in need while still in debt themselves, and reveals key differences between Generation X (ages 35 to 50 in 2015) and Baby Boomers (ages 51 to 69 in 2015).

One in five Americans (22%) provide financial support to a parent and/or an adult child, reported.

Over the past year, financial supporters have each given $12,000 of support on average – that’s an estimated $630 billion from the US economy.

Few report that providing this support is causing them great financial hardship: only 22% say they needed to use their savings to provide financial help while 30% made small sacrifices and lived more frugally.

However, financial supporters hold almost $100,000 in debt on average: $22,000 in unpaid credit card balances, personal lines of credit, or personal or student loans, and $75,000 in mortgages.

Half of Generation X (49%) thinks they have more financial responsibilities than their parents’ and 39% feel their generation will never have as secure a financial life as their parents’ generation.

While financial supporters say they are glad to be able to help their family member (64% are very glad to help a parent and 53% report the same about a child) and would sacrifice more if needed, a third (36%) would delay their retirement to financially support their adult children.

But, if forced to choose, 83% would support an aging parent over an adult child.

Financial supporters are almost twice as likely to be supporting a mother (42%) than a father (23%) and mothers receive $5,000 more support.

Most (69%) of them who support their adult children will do so until their children find well-paying jobs.