As thousands of teenagers across the country await their A-level results and confirmation of university places, new research reveals that the bank of mum and dad will contribute, on average, £2,439 to kit their offspring out for university and support them though their first year.
Gocompare.com surveyed 1,000 parents of 16 to 19 year olds about their plans for university. Over two thirds (62%) said that money was an issue when deciding whether or not their children would go to university.
Of those who either had children at or were planning to go to university:
- 43% expect to contribute financially to help their kids through university;
- More than a fifth (21%) said that they aren't sure how they are going to manage getting kids through;
- 17% think that they will have to borrow money to help kids through university;
- 35% worry about the amount of debt their kids will have after leaving university
And it's not just the parents who were worried about the financial aspects of university, the survey revealed that:
- 20% of teenagers were thinking about applying to their local university so they can continue to live at home;
- 24% of parents said that the prospect of having a large student debt nearly put their child off going to university.
During their child's first year at university parents said that they paid for or will help to fund a range of items including course books, living expenses and IT:
Top 10 items funded by parents
Food and drink expenses
Mobile/smart phone and bill
Insuring a car
Buying a car
Commenting on the research, Claire Peate, Gocompare.com's customer insight manager, said, "Heading off to university can be both an exciting and daunting experience and, for many teenagers, this will be their first experience of managing their finances and paying for their food and rent. As our survey demonstrates, many parents play a big part in helping to ensure their offspring can support themselves financially and manage their money when they start university. But, if they are to graduate with as small a debt as possible, new undergraduates need to learn how to budget and shop wisely.
"Whatever they are buying, students should get into the habit of shopping around for the best deals. Savings can be made not only on the contents of your shopping trolley or the price of a new laptop, but on mobile phone and utility tariffs, credit card interest rates and insurances.
"In addition to looking for the best prices for utilities and insurances, undergraduates should study the small print to make sure that they fully understand what they are committing to - for example, before signing up to a new mobile phone contract, they should think about how they'd use the phone - will it be mostly for texting, calls or access to the internet? How would they like to pay for it and how long they'd want to be tied in for - and pick a package which best suits their usage."
Notes to editors:
On the 3rd to the 11th of June 2013, OnePoll surveyed 1,000 randomly selected parents of 16 to 19 year old children.