Parents fork out £3,500 a year to support children at university - poll

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Parents typically shell out almost £3,500 a year on supporting their child through university studies, according to a poll.

It suggests that many mums and dads provide their offspring with some financial support while they are studying for a degree, but only a small proportion had saved enough money to cover all university-related costs.

The survey of around 2,000 parents of youngsters at university, or have been to university in the last decade, found that 12.6% say that they give, or gave their child between £1,000 and £1,999 per year of university study, while 10.7% said they provide between £2,000 and £2,999, and 10% hand over £3,000-£3,999.

Some 17.7% give or gave less than £1,000 a year, while around 30.2% provided more than £4,000. 

This includes money for tuition fees, accommodation, books and stationery, holidays and travel, socialising and household bills.

Aviva Insurance, which commissioned the survey, calculated that parents typically give their children £3,446 per year - about £287 a month - to support them through the degree.

Overall, around eight in 10 parents said they had given their child some financial support, while 13.5% said that they had saved, or are saving up a fund to cover all university-related costs.

Students in England now pay up to £9,250 a year in tuition fees.

Louise Colley, Aviva customer director, said: "The vast majority of parents with children at university are helping them financially throughout their studies, but few have the funds to cover all related costs.

"Aviva research suggests that students could find themselves with £44,000 of debt on graduation - so it's understandable that many parents aren't able to give their children this level of support."

:: The Censuswide online poll questioned 2,000 UK parents who have children at university or have been to university in the last 10 years.