Rise in the number of families planning to save in response to cost-of-living pressures

Zurich’s annual ‘Cost of Education’ survey shows families now more likely than last year to start a savings fund.

  • Plans to save for the future have increased to 51% of families (from 32% in 2022).
  • Secondary school parents estimate the cost of second level education at €2,531 per annum and paid an average of €3,931 on third level fees.
  • For families that are planning on sending a child to third level education, the average annual cost of student accommodation was €10,077 in 2022.

As cost-of-living pressures continue, savings rates appear to be making a steady recovery this year after savings and spending habits were impacted by COVID-19 and a sustained period of inflation.

According to Zurich’s annual Cost of Education survey*, conducted by iReach this May and June, 56% of families in Ireland already have savings in place that have acted as a shield against the cost-of-living pressures. This figure is slightly up on 2022 (54%).

The good news is that plans to save are on the increase, with the highest levels seen since 2019. Pre-COVID, around 40% of families had committed to putting money aside for a rainy day, which had decreased to 32% by 2022, before climbing to 51 % this year.

Commenting on the findings, Jonathan Daly, Head of Life Retail Distribution and Propositions at Zurich Life Assurance plc said: “It is encouraging now to see the rise in the number of families planning to start saving to plan for the future. In terms of saving for a child’s education, planning ahead and opening a savings account when children are young will help to manage education costs before they become a significant financial burden.”  

The Cost of Education survey provides insights into how much parents are spending, what factors are influencing how much they save and how they plan to save for the cost of their children’s second and third level education.

Cost of living

  • 56% of parents said they have family savings in place that are used to reduce the financial strain of inflation, up 2% on 2022.
  • More than half (51%) of parents now say they are more likely to create a family savings fund to protect against the impact of potential future inflation rises, a big increase of 19% from last year.
  • The majority (68%) of students studying at third level education currently live at home, up 10% compared with 2022.
  • Parents of third level students paid on average €3,931 on third level fees in this year’s survey.
  • The average annual cost of third level student accommodation was €10,077, while rented accommodation had an average annual cost of €5,179.
  • Parents estimated the total cost of secondary school education at €3,581.
  • 28% of parents have taken out a loan to help pay for their children’s secondary school costs.

Help your clients plan ahead to meet rising education costs

Providing for their children’s education, from primary school right through to third level, is a priority for all parents. The costs of education are substantial and continue to rise. One solution is for parents to start early and gradually build up the funds necessary to support their children’s education. An option is to start a savings plan from Zurich. Zurich encourages people to talk to an independent Financial Broker to help set their savings goals, plan their budget, and choose the right plan for their family.

Parents can use Zurich’s Cost of Secondary School Calculator to work out the estimated costs of sending their children to secondary school and to see how much they might need to save each month to meet secondary school costs.  Parents can also use Zurich's Cost of Education benchmarking tool to see how education costs compare and pinpoint where savings could be made.

Signature Free OnlineApply for Regular Savings

Signature Free OnlineApply for Regular Savings from Zurich removes the need for a traditional signature or the need for a digital signature provider such as Adobe or DocuSign – the client validation is completely within the Zurich system. This means you can adapt your sales process to take account of the changed work environment – so if you need to meet your clients remotely and transact business – you can.

For more information

Zurich encourage people to talk to a Financial Broker to help set their savings goals, plan their budget and choose the right plan for their family. Parents can use the Cost of Education Calculators to work out the estimated costs of sending their children to school and/or college and to see how much they might need to save each month to meet these costs. Zurich also offers a wide range of supports for Financial Brokers with a suite of sales material that can help highlight the importance of saving for your clients.

For more information, download the 2023 Cost of Education sales aid, speak to your Zurich Broker Consultant or visit zurichbroker.ie

*Source: Zurich Cost of Education Survey, 2023

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