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Why people choose to leave inheritance

Last updated 22nd February 2024 by the SunLife Content Team

3 min read

Most of us would like to leave inheritance to loved ones. But it often requires some forward planning.

Whether you’re setting aside savings, or considering a Guaranteed Inheritance Plan, it’s good to think about how inherited money might be used. This can help you work out how much you’d like to leave to each person.

Here are a few reasons people choose to leave inheritance to their loved ones.

Help onto the property ladder

Young people today today are facing a very different housing market compared to 40 years ago.

According to Money Helper, the smallest deposit needed for a mortgage is 5% of the property's total value. The average UK house price was over £280,000 in December 2023, which would mean a deposit of at least £14,000!

With rent and bills to pay, it can take a long time to save such a large amount. So, some people leave inheritance to help children or grandchildren buy a home of their own.

Weddings and celebrations

For many, weddings symbolise two families joining together. And it’s traditional for families to help with costs if they can. The average UK wedding in 2023 cost £20,700. And even a small wedding can be hard for a couple to fund on their own.

If you think you may not be here to see young ones get married, you might want to leave them something to help pay for the day. This can be a touching way to be part of their wedding even if you can’t be there in person.

If a wedding isn’t on the cards, your legacy could fund another celebration. Maybe a milestone birthday, baby shower or graduation party.

School and university fees

Currently, universities in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland can charge up to £9,250 per year to undergraduate students. Those in Wales can charge £9,000. And that’s just the course fees. It doesn’t include extra costs like rent, living expenses and course materials.

Most students can get government loans and/or grants to help pay. But many parents and grandparents want to help cover these costs. Leaving an inheritance can help make sure your loved one has the option to go to college or university, whilst reducing the amount of debt they take on.

No specific reason!

If you want to leave someone a cash gift, that’s enough of a reason in itself! Inheritance is personal to everyone, and only you can decide how you want to distribute it.

If you’re looking to leave a cash gift on top of anything you already own, you might be interested in SunLife’s Guaranteed Inheritance Plan. It’s an over 50s life insurance plan designed to leave a cash gift to your loved ones between £5,000 and £50,000.

There are a few health questions to answer. But it’s quick and easy to get a quote online to find out how much cover you could get.

The thoughts and opinions expressed in the page are those of the authors, intended to be informative, and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SunLife. See our Terms of Use for more info.