Adult ‘kids’ wear out welcome mat
With property prices holding firm, it's little wonder more and more adult offspring are staying in their parents' home longer, but how old is too old to still be living off mum and dad?
The latest CoreLogic data shows Australian home values have held up surprisingly well as the nation moves through its first recession in more than 28 years, falling just 1.7 per cent between March and October.
At the same time, wages were down and unemployment rose.
The Reserve Bank responded by slashing the price of debt, and property prices have now started to increase as a result - breaking records in dozens of regions - CoreLogic data shows.
With rental property prices also sky high, the pandemic-induced economic slump has prompted some adults to return to the parental home or remain there longer than expected.
"With so many people predicting property prices will continue to rise and one of the biggest financial concerns being the cost of rent, it's little surprise that Australia agrees the appropriate age for adult children to remain living at home is age 33," Canstar group executive of financial services Steve Mickenbecker said.
"The only group to suggest the stay should be longer is those currently living at home who said the age limit should be 43. Hopefully, this is to give themselves more years to save."
That's up from 41 last year.
Not only are parents keeping a roof over their adult children's heads, they're also paying bills.
Comparison website Finder surveyed 445 parents with children aged over 18 and found 53 per cent paid for their groceries - up 14 per cent from December last year.
Two in five allow their children to live rent free, while roughly one in three are paying for bills such as broadband internet and mobile phones.
Finder insights manager Graham Cooke says it appears parents feel a responsibility to ensure their kids are on a sound financial footing no matter how old they are.
"Thousands of first-home buyers are reliant on their parents to get on the property ladder, with 6 per cent of parents even helping pay for mortgage payments," Mr Cooke said.
According to Canstar's latest Consumer Pulse report, only 25 per cent of Australians - but one third of millennials - feel parents have an obligation to help their children buy their first home.
"This compares to only 14 per cent of baby boomers and shows that first-time buyers may be disappointed by the lack of support they receive from their parents when buying into the great Aussie dream of home ownership," Mr Mickenbecker said.
Mr Cooke warned parents their generosity could hurt their own standard of living in retirement.
"If the pandemic has taught us anything it is that parents need to make sure they have an emergency fund put aside for themselves to deal with any number of circumstances," he said.
"Helping your kids in any way you can is how many see the job of a parent, but mum and dad need to make sure they aren't hurting themselves in the process."
Originally published as Adult 'kids' wear out welcome mat