Life gets ‘most expensive’ at 50

Weddings,university fees,mobile phones and house deposits -- all add up to the financial pressure.

Written by ANI | London | Published:February 16, 2012 6:45 pm

Those embarking on their 50s are about to experience the most expensive stage of their lives,a new study has revealed.

Experts calculated that people who turn 50 can still expect to be lumbered with hefty mortgage payments while also trying to support teenage children.

The cost of weddings,university fees,motoring costs,mobile phones and house deposits — all add up to the financial pressure.

A typical 50-something is required to spend a total of 1,560 pounds per month only to keep their heads above water,according to the study,by leading UK health and well-being mutual organisation Benenden Healthcare Society.

“Reaching 50 is traditionally supposed to be the start of a new lease on life as kids grow older and couples find more time to themselves,” the Daily Mail quoted Marc Bell,Marketing and Business Strategy Director,as saying.

“The stark reality will prove an eye-opener as 50-somethings realise the truth is not so rose-tinted. Debt rarely goes away as we get older and the rising costs of mortgages,motoring and raising children will paint a pessimistic outlook on life.

“On entering our 50s,more of us are paying for our children’s education and taking on more of their day-to-day costs,such as mobile phone bills and going out — indicating that we’re letting our children become more financially dependent on us.

‘We’re also more like to provide financial help for our loved ones and family members — suggesting that whilst it’s the most expensive time of life,it’s also the time when we might be most giving and generous.’

Parents contribute to their children’s mobile phone bills and spending money in addition to running the home and car.

The study surveyed 2,000 home-owning Brits and found that hitting fifty coincided with an acceleration in spending.

A quarter find themselves paying towards their child’s motoring costs like insurance and tyres and one in six have even bought their offspring a car.

Three in ten are presently helping to pay for their child’s education and just under half pay for their child’s mobile phone contract — both adding another 189 pounds to the monthly bill.

Youngsters will also expend another 100 pounds of their money each month on their social lives and receive 78 pounds pocket money — making them the wealthiest children of any age group of parents polled.

However,almost four in ten (37 per cent) of over 50s have given their children a lump sum within the last year – with one in ten helping to pay off debts,and one in five paying towards a holiday or a deposit for a house.

Other costs comprise weddings,university fees,DIY jobs and extensions.

It was also found that over-50s are twice as likely to provide financial help for their own or partner’s parents – with 24 per cent giving out regular help compared to the other age groups.

But with such huge outlays one in ten over 50s ends the month in deficit and one in five struggle to support their immediate family.

“Life is getting tougher for the over 50s. The increased costs places extras pressures on the wallet,but it can also put greater pressure on mental well-being and the strength of relationships,” Marc Bell said.

“In the midst of this greater expense,we should not forget to prioritise our personal health. It is perhaps the time of life when maintaining good health is most vital – therefore ensuring a secure future for our family.

“Whilst being in your 50s can be the most expensive time of life,not having safeguards such as life cover could end up leaving loved ones to pick up the pieces and to try and deal with huge financial burdens,” Marc Bell added.

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