Good Weekend: all about KIPPERS

Alex Brooks wrote this upfront Good Weekend news piece about KIPPERS: Kids In Parents Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings.

KippersAren’t they smelly fish?

No, they are Kids In Parents Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings. Closely related to the adultescent and the boomerang kid, kippers are the children of Baby Boomers that never leave home and defer traditional adult milestones – or millstones – of marriage, mortgage and making babies.

How many of these lazy so-and-sos are sponging off their parents?

More than a third of 20 to 29-year-olds still bunk in with mum and dad, according to Quantum research’s 2005 AustraliaSCAN survey. Even worse, most Boomer parents actively encourage their kids to remain at home. A Wizard Home Loans survey found 62 per cent of those with adult children living with them don’t want their kids to nick off any time soon and half don’t even charge them any board.

What! You mean the parents like it?

Oh yes. The minute their Kippers abandon them, they become Empty Nesters. Then it’s only a whisker away from Winnebagos, Jason recliners and enjoying talkback radio. Much better to keep the kids at home so you know that Wolfmother is a band and not, like, a wolf’s mother.

Just how much do these Kippers cost?

There are no hard and fast estimates, but more than half a million Australians aged over 55 have adult children still living with them – so it ain’t chump change. The Wizard Home Loan survey found 30 per cent of parents stuck with Kippers are likely to delay retirement until their children finally leave home. What’s more, the Boomers with Kippers apparently work harder than the Empty Nesters, averaging 36.1 hours a week compared to 34.6 hours a week.