More Parents Risking Retirement for the Kids

A survey has revealed that almost half of Canadian parents expect to help their children buy a house


By Jennifer Hughes

Photo: iStock/AndreyPopov.


Nearly half of Canadian parents with children under the age of 18 say they plan to help their kids buy their first house, according to a recent survey, and an increasing number (compared with the results of a similar survey in 2017) say they’ll postpone retirement or use some of their retirement savings to do so.

Conducted by Leger for FP Canada (formerly the Financial Planning Standards Council), the online survey polled more than 1,500 Canadians. The results showed that 48% of parents with children under 18 say they’ll help the kids buy a house, up from 43% in 2017. A surprising 39% say they’ll postpone their retirement if necessary; in 2017, that number was 27%. Almost one-third (30%) said they would take money from their retirement savings to help their children with the purchase, while in 2017, only 21% said they would; 26% (up from 23%) said they’d use some of their home equity. Parents in urban centres were much more likely to use their home equity or retirement savings to assist their children.

Meanwhile, a quarter (24%) of those surveyed with children older than 18 said that that they had already helped out when it came to their kids buying a first home.

Parents over the age of 55 were more likely to have helped (27% had done so) than those under 55 (15%). Parents in Atlantic Canada, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan were also more likely to agree that they’d helped their kids purchase a home than those in any other region.