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If you think the costs of a post-secondary education are high, you’re not alone.

A recent survey created for FP Canada found that nearly half (48%) of all Canadian parents with children under the age of 18 predict that their retirement will have to be delayed to assist with paying for their child’s student debts.

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For Canadians with children over the age of 18, the survey found that 16% have had to postpone their retirement, while another 20% say that their child’s education cost has prevented them from paying off debt.

Those numbers increase as you travel east, with nearly one-in-four (23%) of respondents from Atlantic Canada reporting that they have had to delay their retirement.

For the students themselves, the average debt load has caused many young Canadians to delay life milestones, like postponing moving out or buying a home.

According to FP Canada, nearly one-third (31%) of parents with graduated children (or who are nearly graduated) finished their education with over $10,000 in student debt.

Due to the debt, 10% of respondents with adult offspring say that their child’s student debt has caused them stay at home rather than move out, and 19% say that the debt has forced their child to postpone buying a home.

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Despite the high costs of post-secondary education, the vast majority of Canadian parents with children under the age of 18 still report that they are willing to help pay for their child’s schooling.

In total, 82% of respondents in this category say they intend to assist their children with post-secondary costs, despite anticipating long-term impacts on their own finances.

The study used the responses of 1,557 Canadians between April 26 – 29, 2019 from an online panel. According to FP, the margin of error for the study was +/-2.5%.

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