Number of older parents in UK hits one million
‘Parensioners’ – men and women having children in their 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond, and who will be at retirement age while they are still financially supporting their offspring – join a string of celebrities such as Elton John and Halle Berry who have put off starting a family.
In the 20 years between 1992 and 2012, the number of people having children after the age of 40 (45 for men) has risen by 298% for women and 149% for men.
According to the report by insurer LV=, 49 and 43 are now widely considered to be the ‘cut-off’ ages for men and women to have their children.
Ray Chinn, LV= head of pensions, said: ” “We often see tales of mature celebrities that have become new parents; none more recent than Halle Berry who announced the pregnancy of her second child, at the age of 46, in last few days.
“And like these celebrities, we can now see just how many normal men and women are following in their famous footsteps and becoming what has today been dubbed ‘parensioners’.
“Everyone has their own reasons for when they start a family and the research identifies the key reasons – most prominently that people wanted to have one more child before they were deemed “too old” and that they didn’t meet the right person to have a child with until later in life.”
The results of the research point to a marked change in attitude to what the nation now believes is the acceptable ‘cut-off age’ for having children.
However, people considering parenthood at whatever stage of their life are being urged to understand the financial strains of bringing up children.
According to the report, the average cost of raising a child is £10,593.23 annually alongside the savings parensioners currently have for retirement, which would give them an annual income of £8,407.
Of course this depends on whether they have a private pension or not.
Worryingly 27% of parensioners confessed to not having put away a single penny for their lives after work.
Nearly a quarter of parensioners have children that will be aged 15 or younger when they reach pensionable age.
And many more parensioners will see their retirement years coincide with one of the most expensive periods of raising a child: university.
With the average cost of attending university standing at £53,330 over the course of a typical degree, that’s a considerable outlay at a time when many parensioners will be hoping to rein in spending to make ends meet.