‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ gifted over £35bn in 2023 – SunLife

The ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ has gifted more than £35bn this year to help children and grandchildren meet costs, according to research from SunLife.

SunLife’s second annual ‘Life Well Spent’ report revealed that almost six million (23%) people over-50 have given ‘significant cash gifts’ to family over the past five years, giving £15,978 on average to help cover various costs, including debts, cars and holidays.

Of those over-50s who gifted money to family, 20% (1.2 million people) did so to help a loved one pay for a deposit on a home purchase.

Most (91%) helped their own children, while 7% gifted cash to help their grandchildren buy a house.

The regions where over-50s were most likely to have helped children or grandchildren with a deposit were the North West, East Anglia and London, at 26%.

The region where people gifted the largest amounts was London, at almost £84,000 on average, compared with an average first-time buyer deposit just shy of £64,000.

Of those who gifted money to help with a house deposit, 81% said it improved their own happiness.

Mark Screeton, CEO at SunLife, said: “Our Life Well Spent report shows that financially supporting family is a priority for many over 50s.

“And given 27% say that one of their biggest financial worries is how their children and grandchildren are coping financially, is perhaps no surprise that so many want to help out.

“The research shows that over 50s are gifting cash for a range of different reasons, from simply wanting to treat a loved one with an extravagant birthday or Christmas gift, to something more specific, like helping with a house deposit or to buy a car.”

He added: “And while financial need is a clear driver for why over 50s are giving so generously, there is another factor at play – happiness – with 81% of those who have gifted cash saying that doing so increased their overall happiness.”