Money & Career

Should you help your adult children financially?

©iStockphoto.com/GRADYREESEphotography Image by: ©iStockphoto.com/GRADYREESEphotography Author: Canadian Living

Money & Career

Should you help your adult children financially?

Long gone are the days where people got a great job out of school, got married at 20 and started having a family early in life. Today, many people are living at home longer and mooching off their parents for what seems like an eternity. Even if adult children do have a family of their own, they're often still asking their parents for financial help.

It's tough for parents to say no, but at some point, they have think about saving money for their own retirement. However, parents don't have to cut their kids off completely. Here are four good ways parents can help provide financial support to their children.

1. Offer financial help with education

A lot of grandparents help pay for their grandchildren's education. School costs are enormous, so this is a great way to help the family and do it in a way that has long-lasting benefits.

Anyone can set up an RESP, so open one for a grandchild and put their birthday money in it every year. By the time they get to university, they'll hopefully have enough saved up to get them through school.

2. Help with a down payment on a home

If you have money to spare, consider helping your adult child with the down payment on their first house. The hardest thing for most young adults to do is get into the real estate market, but it's much easer to stay in it once they're there.

Not only are you investing in your kids' future by doing this, but there's a good chance that their property will rise in value over the years. If they end up selling their house one day, you may be able to get some of that cash back -- or at least know that you've helped them make a wise financial investment.
3. Create a trust

If you want your child to have some money when they're older, set up a trust instead of just handing over the dough. The trust allows you to stipulate rules, such as at what age the child gets the money and what they have to do with it.

It's a good tool to make sure your children spend that money responsibly. While you're waiting for the money to be doled out, you can invest it in the market and, hopefully, grow the assets.

4. Buy a business

Does your adult child have trouble keeping a job? It may be because he or she just hasn't found the right one. Consider buying your offspring a business. Entrepreneurship drives the Canadian economy so there are plenty of companies to own.

Purchase something they're passionate about. Keep an ownership stake so you can get regular dividends and, if they eventually sell, you can get some of the cash back.

The idea is to be productive with your money. Rather than just giving your adult child a credit card to shop with, give them something that has positive returns -- both financially and personally.

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Should you help your adult children financially?

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