‘Giving while living’ now competing with ‘traditional’ inheritance

The idea of people leaving a traditional inheritance may be dying out a report has suggested – as around half of the UK’s retirees say they are now ‘giving while living’ .

Three in five retirees surveyed (60%) said they are already providing regular financial support to their family and friends.

The survey, carried out on behalf of HSBC, covered more than 16,000 people living in 15 countries, including the UK.

Some 50% of retirees surveyed in the UK said they are giving regular financial support to someone, such as a spouse, a younger relative or friends.

And 19% of retirees in the UK said they were giving financial support to their grown-up children – and 9% were helping their grandchildren out financially.

Apart from the UK, the other countries where people were surveyed for the report were Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and the United States.

The global research found the potential for a ‘mis-match’ between people’s hopes of receiving an inheritance and the extent to which it will help them in reality.

The survey said that while nearly three quarters (74%) of working age people ‘expect’ to leave an inheritance to their children, only 29% are ‘confident’ in doing so.

In the UK, 58% of working age people expect to leave an inheritance, but only 33% have ever received one, stated the report.

As a result, the report warned that ‘working-age people in the UK may have ‘unrealistic expectations’ about the inheritance they expect to receive.

More than half (54%) of those who expect to receive an inheritance in the future say it will help fund their retirement, whilst 15% say it will completely or largely fund it.

The report also found that more than two in five (41%) older people are worried about not being able to support family or friends financially, while a similar proportion are concerned about being reliant on family or friends for financial support.

The global research also found that almost three-quarters (73%) of people have been unable to realise at least one of their hopes since retiring.

In the UK, 53% of retirees had been unable to achieve at least one of their dreams.

  • Survey as at April 2015.