Parents Choose Kids Over Retirement

NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- A new MassMutual study shows that about half of all parents who make funding their kids' college education a priority have little left for their own retirement. It seems that with money being tight, the kids are a priority as Mom and Dad take a back seat.

The idea that parents are falling behind on their retirement savings isn’t anything new. Studies show that American adults – of all age groups – are worried sick about their financial futures.

But what is new is that American parents, knowing full well their own financial futures are at risk, are doing what they can to ensure their kids get a decent college education – even if it means they raid their own retirement savings to pay for college costs.

The MassMutual study notes only three in 10 parents believe they are adequately funding their own retirement. And half the study participants told MassMutual that after they pay for their kids’ college education, there won’t be enough money left for their own retirement savings. Some other points from the study:

• 39% of Americans have developed a plan for retirement saving.

• 31% of women have a plan for retirement, “despite the fact that women can expect to spend more than 50% more time in retirement than men,” the report points out.

• 63% of study participants say they will work part-time during their retirement.

American parents don’t have just their children’s college education to worry about, either. About 25% or survey respondents say they are caring for their elderly parents as well, but that’s still not stopping them from plowing money towards their children. The study says that 71% of U.S. parents say “it's important that their children aren't burdened by taking care of them when they're older.”