Full-nest syndrome is costing parents £3bn per year

22nd October 2014


Grown-up children who are still living in their family home are costing parents £3.2 billion a year in extra expenses, a new study has revealed.

There are now 2.7 million “full nest households”, with 20-34 year-olds still living with their parents, according to the research by Scottish Widows.

These parents report the highest levels of household expenditure at £460 per month, £100 more than those whose children have fled the nest and 62% are also supporting their children financially.

More than a quarter of adults between 20-34 are still living at home and a fifth of students are opting to stay at home while studying as the high cost of living and accommodation means they are unable to fly the nest even for a short time.

To cope with the additional cost of having their adult children living at home for longer, the report finds that Full Nesters are making greater financial sacrifices than Empty Nesters across the board, with some putting their own financial future at risk.

One in three have cut spending on vital items such as groceries, while 16% have needed to take out a loan, spent on credit cards, or gone overdrawn.

A third of Full Nesters report they are contributing less to their savings, while more than one in four are spending their savings to meet the cost of everyday living.

Carolyn Fairbairn, chair of the Centre for the Modern Family , the think tank established by Scottish Widows which conducted the study, said: “This research highlights the very real pressures being felt by Full Nesters as a result of the rapid emergence of the ‘Never Fledged Generation’.

“With many parents raiding their savings or putting their retirement plans on hold to cover the cost of their adult children still living under their roof, we need to ask ourselves what the longer term implications of these trends are and what this means for the financial well-being of these parents. ”


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