Thousands of over-55s are generously gifting money as part of the Bank of Mum and Dad (BoMaD), using savings and even pensions to help their family onto the housing ladder, research from Legal & General and Cebr has revealed. However, the new data also shows that many people could be accepting a more uncertain retirement after financially supporting family members to buy a home. These latest findings follow earlier research from Legal & General which showed that this year the average BoMaD contribution has risen by more than £6,000, to £24,100. The rise means that the Bank of Mum and Dad is now the equivalent of a top 10 UK mortgage lender, gifting a total of £6.3bn in 2019.

More than half (56%) of BoMaD lenders who have or would consider helping family to purchase property said they are willing to because ‘it was a nice thing to do’. Almost another fifth (19%) said they feel it’s their personal responsibility to help out. The Bank of Mum and Dad research has also revealed that consumers are increasingly considering other solutions that can help them to support family members but also pay for the retirement they want to lead.

Unlocking housing wealth with equity release is becoming more popular with the over-55s and many are now using the money to help with a deposit. 16% of BoMaD lenders have or would release equity and use that money to financially support their children or grandchildren. This makes it the third most popular source of funds for the Bank of Mum and Dad. But BoMaD lenders are using these funds to help with their own retirement ambitions too. More than a quarter (26%) would or have used their housing wealth to fund home renovations and nearly three in every five (58%) parents and grandparents are using it to free up cash to stay in their own home. Across the over-55s surveyed who haven’t released property equity already, well over a quarter (29%) said they would consider drawing equity from their home with a lifetime mortgage.