Are you part of the ‘sandwich generation’ which earns the most but saves the least?
- Credit: PA
The pressures of supporting their elderly parents' care and children's education is leaving the 'sandwich generation' short when it comes to their pension, a new report warns.
The region's 45 to 54-year-olds are caught in a squashed middle which sees them earn the most but save the least, research has found.
Squeezed between paying for their ageing parents and children, as well as trying to save for their retirement, the age group was the most likely to save nothing at all, according to a study by wealth managers Brewin Dolphin, whose East Anglian office is in Ipswich.
In the East of England, 35% of the generation said they were not putting anything away while 15% said they were saving less than 5% of their earnings.
Of those asked, 60% said they did not feel they were putting enough aside and 73% said they could not afford to save more.
Aiden Watts, assistant director at Brewin Dolphin East Anglia, said it was important for families to talk to each other about financial issues.
He said: 'As our population gets older there is going to be an awful lot more people who need to think about their parents' care, to plan for whether to have an annex in the garden for instance, and at the same time the cost for children is going up with university fees a particular concern.
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'The days of thinking that once a child hits 18 those costs are removed from your balance sheet are gone.
'Families need to have open and frank discussions about their financial situation. It could be that the parents are saving for their care thinking that their children will not pay for it, while the children are saving for it themselves.'
The Brewin Dolphin Family Wealth Report, which surveyed 11,000 people, also found the sandwich generation in the East had an average pension shortfall of £379,000.
Mr Watts said: 'Everyone can find a more immediate cost than paying into their pension, whether it's the mortgage or saving for a deposit on a house, there is always something which seems more pressing.
'But that extra one or two per cent now can make all the difference in 20 or 30 years' time.
'People need to be aware that in their 40s and 50s is when their earning potential is at its absolute highest so they can't afford to miss out on opportunities to contribute to their pension.'
Are you part of the sandwich generation and feeling the impact? Write to email@example.com