Bank of nan and grandad

Tuesday 19 August 2014

• British Grandparents plan to give grandchildren more than £16 billion* for their studies • More than a third of British Nan and Grandads have helped, or are planning to help, fund grandchildren at university • Grandparents help grandchildren much more now than they did five years’ ago.

Nan and Grandads’ billions for student grandchildren

The Bank of Mum and Dad is fast becoming the Bank of Nan and Grandad – after a poll revealed that Britain’s over 50s plan to give their grandchildren £16.7 billion for university costs.

A Saga Savings poll** shows that more than a third of Britain’s estimated 11.8 million grandparents have funded, or are planning to help fund, their grandchildren’s studies. The survey of almost 10,000 over 50s shows that, on average, they will each fork out nearly £4,000. This suggests that older Britons, having worked hard and saved all their lives, are more than happy to let wealth cascade down the generations – if it means helping them get on in life.

In addition, two thirds (67%) of over-50s parents contribute an average of £6,777 to the cost of sending their children to university – according to the poll.  

The figures stand in stark contrast to the amount grandparents said they were saving and contributing to university costs five years’ ago. A Saga poll*** in May 2009, of more than 13,000 over 50s, showed that 41% of grandparents put money aside specifically for grandchildren – to help with things such as university costs. But the total pledged was just £1,000 over five years – almost £3,000 less than the latest amount grandparents say they have contributed.

Andrew Strong, chief executive, Saga Personal Finance, commented: “The billions that Britain’s grandparents put aside for grandchildren shows both how hard they have worked and saved all their lives and also how lucky teenagers are now to have such generous relatives.

“These days, it pays for the over 50s to be savvy savers and intelligent investors, if they are to continue this generous support. Allowing wealth to cascade down the generations, seeing how their money supports their kith and kin, is the very heart of what it means to be a modern grandparent.”


Notes to editors

*Calculation derived from: ONS statistics say there are more than 22 million over 50s in the UK. Populus poll shows 56% of respondents (12.3 million) are grandparents, 34% of those (4.2 million) contribute, on average, £3,988 each to grandchildren’s university costs. £3,988 x 4.2 million = £16.7 billion

**Populus interviewed 9,918 Saga customers, all aged 50+, online between 18 and 24 July 2014. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules; for more information see

***Populus interviewed 13,018 adults, aged 50 and over, between 8th and 15th May 2009. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. For more details go to

About Saga Savings
Saga offers savings accounts to suit a range of needs, including fixed rate savings and ISA accounts:
•    All accounts offer the option to have interest paid monthly or annually
•    Saga Savings accounts are available to UK residents over 50
•    All Saga Savings accounts are provided by Birmingham Midshires, a division of Bank of Scotland which is authorised for accepting deposits by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation authority.

For further information regarding Saga Savings accounts, please visit or call 0800 111 4935     

The deposit-taker for Saga Savings Accounts is Birmingham Midshires, a division of Bank of Scotland plc, which is authorised for accepting deposits by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct  Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number  169628. Registered office: The Mound, Edinburgh, EH1 1YZ (Registered in Scotland No. SC327000).

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