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Pattie Lovett-Reid

Chief Financial Commentator, CTV


Let the family feud begin!

Nearly half (45 per cent) of Canadians with adult children say their “big kids” are a financial strain, according to a new report out by Financial Planning Standards Council. In fact, 51 per cent of Canadians with adult children say those children are still financially dependent.

FPSC’s consumer advocate, Kelley Keehn, says these results raise some fascinating questions about children, financial independence and suggest potential sources of marital conflict.

The survey found that 44 per cent of men are significantly more likely than women (32 per cent) to assist children of all ages with their first home purchase. The gender divide also extends to delaying retirement with 22 per cent of men (vs. 12 per cent of women) willing to postpone retirement to assist their kids with their first home purchase.

Assisting “big kids” with post-secondary costs will postpone the retirement of 45 per cent of respondents and prevent 46 per cent from paying off their debt.

Whether to help out your children isn’t really the question – but rather how do you help out your children without jeopardizing your own financial well-being?

I would love to hear from you on this topic. Email your comments to or tweet them at @PattieCTV.

Many of you reached out to Pattie on this topic. Here's some of the responses she received:

"The problem is more complex than that. Even if it does not jeopardize the parents' retirement, how do you protect the kids from themselves. Responsible financial management of finances and costs is not what kids learn from peers or the education system. Passive management of finances in the issue as well." -- Ram Ramani 

"It's a good headline but you should really change it to 'how your kids become financial success stories' and  then talk about real-life examples."  -- Dave Lovett  

"As an advisor for 36 years, it is simple. We do a full plan for our clients. Educate them as to what their own needs are now and in the future. Show them all the reprucussions from helping their adult children and then help them make an informed decision." -- Dan Rose