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‘Artful Lodgers’ costing parents £1,780 a year

Emma Lunn
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Emma Lunn

Parents are forking out an extra £1,780 a year in household expenses if they have adult children living at home, according to Fidelity International.

The investment company’s Modern Life report dubbed the generation living at home well into adulthood “The Artful Lodgers”.

Fidelity found that despite the added cost, two-thirds (69 per cent) of parents with adult children living at home describe their living arrangement positively. Half of parents love having children at home and wish that they could stay forever, and 42 per cent feel fortunate to be in a position where they can continue to support their children.

However, it’s not positive for all. More than one in 10 (13 per cent) of parents said adult children living at home puts pressure on household finances, while 10 per cent said it affected their relationship with their partner. Given the option, 12 per cent of parents would like their children to move out.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has found that living with parents is now the most common living arrangement for young adults. It found there are 3.4 million young adults living with their parents across the UK, and 88,000 of those are over the age of 30.

Cost remains a key factor as to why adult children still live at home. Two-thirds (66 per cent) of people in their 20s and 30s don’t feel prepared to buy a home, with 55 per cent of those in this age range putting this down to the financial commitment.

However, people in their 20s and 30s remain optimistic about home ownership. Two in three (69 per cent) of people in their 20s believe it is likely they will own a home and 48 per cent of people in their 30s feel the same. It’s not until people reach their 40s that the dream of home ownership falls, when just 18 per cent of non-homeowners believe they will ever own a property.

Tom Stevenson, investment director for personal investing at Fidelity International, said: “Owning your own home remains a high priority for many people, of all ages. Renting can feel like throwing money away and the flexibility it offers is no substitute for the feeling of security that comes with owning your own home.

“Today’s elevated house prices mean getting on the property ladder requires careful planning and some hard saving. The Artful Lodger generation can put significant sums of money aside by living with parents rent-free. To maximise investments over longer periods of time, hopeful buyers should invest in shares which have historically outperformed safer assets like bonds and cash.”