Imagine having a mortgage of $400,000 when you hit your 50s.

For some Bay residents that is a reality, as Carmen Hall reports today.

Mortgage brokers told her they have seen a lot of people in their 50s come in seeking advice on how to deal with a $300,000 to $400,000 mortgage.

For some it was a drive to keep up with the Jones' which saw them borrow money against their house while others had tried to help their kids get into the increasingly expensive property market.


Either way, you have to have some sympathy for those who find themselves in such a situation.

It would be frightening to realise you have that much to pay off with only 10 to 20 years to go before retirement.

Read more: Adult kids putting pressure on over 50s saving for retirement

I can understand the desire to spend some of your hard earned money once the kids have left home.

You work for 50-odd years only to carefully budget your earnings to get into your first house and to raise kids. Once they are fending for themselves I can understand wanting to enjoy some of your earning before getting into saving for retirement.

Wanting to help your kids out is also understandable.

It really shows just how important it is to get into the housing market young and make paying off your house top priority - even if it does mean being more frugal than your peers.

What really shocked me was that kids were pressuring their parents to help financially or ripping them off.

Saving enough to live on for 20-odd years after you retire is a daunting and difficult enough task without having kids pressuring you for money.

If anything, we should be helping out our parents after they have retired.

It's a good lesson for those of us who are younger. One I'm glad I didn't have to learn the hard way.

I'll be doing all I can to make sure we own our home freehold before we hit retirement age.