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Coronavirus: A quarter of parents forced to borrow from children's savings

Abigail Fenton
·2-min read
Parents raid kids' piggy banks to pay for food and other expenses. (Fabian Blank/Unsplash)
Parents raid kids' piggy banks to pay for food and other expenses. Photo: Fabian Blank/Unsplash

A quarter of parents in the UK have been forced to “dip into” their children’s savings since the COVID-19 lockdown began, research suggests.

Food expenses was the main reason parents had to borrow from their children, the survey of 2,000 people by Direct Line Life Insurance found.

However, energy bills, childcare, clothes, travel, mortgage or rent payments, and debts were also among common costs parents couldn’t cover themselves.

READ MORE: Brits get more joy from family and finances than relationships in COVID-19 pandemic

The study also found that over a quarter (27%) of parents have had to stop “setting aside” money for their children since 23 March.

While some Brits have actually saved money during the COVID-19 lockdown, a third of Brits have eaten into their savings in lockdown, and seven in 10 have been pushed into, or further into debt, according to recent research.

Six in 10 Brits already run out of money before their next pay day nearly every month, and the vast majority are more concerned about the financial impact of the pandemic than they are about Brexit.

READ MORE: Savings app sees record growth as Brits strive for financial security during pandemic

Chloe Couper, business manager at Direct Line Life Insurance, said: “The impact of the coronavirus pandemic has been severe and unfortunately means many families are facing tough financial decisions.

“Widespread redundancies, furloughing and pay reductions have resulted in many households across the country having to cope on a lower income and try to reduce their spending.

“While it is understandable that parents feel they need to utilise any savings they and their children have to cover costs, this could have a negative long-term impact on their children if this money was being set aside for things like university fees or property deposits.”