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Written by
Anna McEntee
Insurance comparison expert
Posted
16 JUNE 2023
5 min read
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The Cost of Living with Parents

Rising property prices and increased mortgage costs mean it’s harder than ever for people to get on the property ladder. The competitive rental market also makes it difficult for younger generations to move out of home at all, and many young adults are choosing to live with their parents for longer to cut costs and save money.

In light of this, we surveyed 1,000 UK parents with children over 18 who still live at home, to find out how many of them charge their children money to live there, the price they charge and how exactly they work this figure out. 

How much do parents charge their children to live at home?

Over half (55.1%) of parents we surveyed said they charge their adult children some form of rent money for living at home. It seems most of them set reasonable prices, however, as the average amount charged by parents around the UK is just £25.55 per week – which works out as £110.71 per month. 

This amount is over seven times cheaper than the average rental cost for a 1-bedroom flat outside of a city centre (£179 per week), and over nine times cheaper than that for a flat located in a city centre (£235.08 per week).

That means that by choosing to live at home with their parents, young adults could save an average of nearly £10,900 per year on rent.

We also found that older parents tend to charge the most money, with those aged over 55 asking for an average of £31.90 per week, while those aged 33-34 only charge an average of £25.81 per week. 

In which UK cities do parents charge children the most for rent?

Parents in Brighton charge their children the most money to live at home, asking for £52.33 per week on average – which is more than double the overall average charge of £25.55. However, this is still far cheaper than the city’s average rent costs (£294.64 per week in the city centre or £244.64 outside the city centre).

Meanwhile, parents in Belfast charge their children the least at an average of £14.03 per week, which is over £11 cheaper than the overall UK average. 

Which UK cities can you save the most money by paying rent to parents, instead of renting privately?

When it comes to where people can make the biggest savings by living with parents, London takes the crown. The average cost for a 1-bed in the capital’s city centre is £2,080.71 per month, while parents in London charge just £110.03 per month on average for their children to live at home. This means living with parents could save Londoners an average of £1,970.68 per month – totalling a huge £23,648.16 per year.

Parents in Bristol offer the next biggest savings, with the potential for their children to save an average of £1,021.26 per month (or £12,255.12 per year) by living at home, followed by those in Edinburgh (£961.57 per month) and Brighton (£951.82 per month). 

Top 10 cities where people save the most money by living with parents

Rank City Avg. amount charged by parents per month Avg. cost of a 1-bed in city centre per month Cost difference % difference
1 London £110.03 £2,080.71 £1,970.68 1,791.08%
2 Bristol £115.41 £1,136.67 £1,021.26 884.92%
3 Edinburgh £71.83 £1,033.40 £961.57 1,338.71%
4 Brighton £226.75 £1,178.57 £951.82 419.77%
5 Manchester £101.25 £933.67 £832.42 822.15%
6 Belfast £60.79 £855.00 £794.21 1,306.39%
7 Norwich £111.23 £857.14 £745.91 670.63%
8 Newcastle £88.57 £815.55 £726.98 820.76%
9 Southampton £99.22 £820.42 £721.20 726.84%
10 Birmingham £104.94 £824.32 £719.38 685.54%

Which household bills do parents factor into the money they charge?

Two thirds of parents (65.5%) say they do take bills into consideration when charging their child rent. The most common reason for parents to charge money is due to food bills, with nearly half (46.8%) saying they take this into account. This may be due to supermarket prices continuing to rise across the country with inflation at an all-time high.

Energy bills (41.5%) and gas bills (28.6%) are the next most common considerations, which again may be influenced by the rising cost of energy over the past year. Electricity prices increased by 66.7% and gas prices by 129.4% over the year leading up to March 2023, so it’s understandable that many parents would factor this into the money they charge their adult children for living with them.

Rank Household bill % of parents who charge for this
1 Food bills 46.8%
2 Energy bills 41.5%
3 Gas bills 28.6%
4 Internet bills 25.1%
5 Water bills 20.8%
6 Council Tax 16.8%
7 Rent payments 15.1%
8 Household maintenance 7.69%
9 Mortgage payments 5.3%
10 Home Insurance 4.54%

Forgotten household bills

Just 4.5% of parents factor home insurance costs into the rent they charge their adult children for living at home, and only 5.3% take into account mortgage payments.

Parents may believe that these costs won’t be affected by their children living at home, and therefore don’t incorporate them into the money they charge. However, home insurance costs may increase if another adult is living in the property, as premiums may be raised to cover the heightened risk of accidental damage with another person living there. 

While home insurance might not be top of the list for parents deciding what bills to charge their children, it’s important that parents do consider how having their adult children live at home may affect their home insurance policy. Making sure to have the correct level of cover for everyone in your household is vital, and while adult children are often covered by their parents’ policy, this isn’t always the case.

Some home insurance providers only extend cover to those who are named in the policy, which is why it’s essential to share the names of all household members, including adult children, with your provider. While it may seem like a minor detail, omitting the names of adult children from your policy can lead to significant gaps in coverage and potential financial risks.

Methodology and sources

The average cost of a 1-bed flat in each city was taken from Numbeo.

All other data taken from a survey of 1,014 parents whose 18+ year old children live at home, carried out in May 2023.