A survey for the equity release referral service found more than a third (34%) of estate agents have seen a rise in first-time buyers being helped by grandparents compared with 26% who report an increase in parents helping out children.
Around a fifth (21%) of estate agents say first-time buyers are being helped by parents and grandparents.
However, half (49%) of those questioned say they are worried about the withdrawal of government schemes to help first-time buyers. The Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme funding lenders offering higher loan-to-value loans ended at the start of the year, though equity loans and Help to Buy ISAs continue.
Will Hale, director at Key Partnerships, said: “The financial pressure on first-time buyers to raise the money for a deposit means grandparents are starting to play a bigger role than parents.
“Grandparents however need to think carefully about how they will fund grandchildren and plan ahead so they are not doing so at a cost to their own financial well-being in retirement. That should include looking at releasing equity from their homes.”