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81% of Parents Think Kids' Extracurricular Activities May Lead to Income

From sports and music to beauty pageants and debate team, 2 in 3 parents of children who participate in competitive activities have gone into debt

CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 24, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Eight in 10 parents with children who participate in extracurricular activities think those pursuits could someday lead to income for their kid, according to a new report from CompareCards.com, and the more adults spend on their kids' activities, the more likely they are to think it will pay off.

CompareCards asked more than 700 parents about their children's extracurricular activities ranging from sports and music to beauty pageants and debate team, and found that nearly two-thirds of those parents have gone into debt to support their kids' passions – and 64 percent have been stressed about paying for them.

(PRNewsfoto/CompareCards)

Key findings

  • Eight in 10 parents think their child's competitive activity could one day lead to income, and as parents spend more, they become more likely to believe their child could make it big. Ninety percent of parents who spend at least $4,000 per year think their kid will one day earn money from the activity, and 94 percent of parents currently paying off debt for their child's activity think it will lead to future income. That's compared to 75 percent of parents who spend less than $1,000 annually.
  • Sixty-two percent have been in debt for their kid's activity, and one in three are currently paying off related debt. Of those in debt, nearly one in 10 owe more than $5,000, and 27 percent owe more than $3,000.
  • Nearly two-thirds of parents are stressed about paying for their child's competitive activities, and as parents' spending increases, so does their stress level.
  • More than half spend more than they can afford on their child's activity – but 48 percent don't regret it. Nearly three in four parents who spend more than $4,000 per year say it's more than they can afford.
  • Sports teams are the most popular competitive activity, with 30 percent of parents reporting it as their child's activity of choice. Music (16 percent), dance (15 percent), gymnastics (12 percent) and cheerleading (9 percent) are also top choices.
  • Credit cards are by far the most popular payment option, with 42 percent using plastic for expenses related to their kid's activity.

"Parents should always encourage their kids to dream big and support their ambitions, but it's important to make sure those dreams don't derail parents' own visions of financial stability and retirement," said Matt Schulz, Chief Industry Analyst at CompareCards. "Whether your kids' dreams involve the NFL Draft, Broadway or the White House, the reality is only a very small percentage of kids will turn their passion into a full-fledged profession. Considering lower-cost alternatives, strategically saving, and even having your son or daughter pitch in are all ways to keep kids' dreams alive without drowning in debt."

To view the full report, visit www.comparecards.com/blog/8-in-10-parents-think-kids-extracurricular-activities-may-lead-to-income.

About LendingTree
LendingTree (TREE) is the nation's leading online marketplace that connects consumers with the choices they need to be confident in their financial decisions. LendingTree empowers consumers to shop for financial services the same way they would shop for airline tickets or hotel stays, comparing multiple offers from a nationwide network of over 500 partners in one simple search, and can choose the option that best fits their financial needs. Services include mortgage loans, mortgage refinances, auto loans, personal loans, business loans, student refinances, credit cards and more. Through the My LendingTree platform, consumers receive free credit scores, credit monitoring and recommendations to improve credit health. My LendingTree proactively compares consumers' credit accounts against offers on our network, and notifies consumers when there is an opportunity to save money. In short, LendingTree's purpose is to help simplify financial decisions for life's meaningful moments through choice, education and support. LendingTree, LLC is a subsidiary of LendingTree, Inc. For more information, go to www.lendingtree.com, dial 800-555-TREE, like our Facebook page and/or follow us on Twitter @LendingTree.

About CompareCards:
CompareCards' mission is to help people make smarter, more informed, healthier financial decisions based on deeper knowledge of financial offers. Each month, over 2.9 million visitors come to CompareCards' website to independently compare credit cards side-by-side and choose a credit card based on interest rate, reward benefit, cost savings, and other factors that are important to each person. CompareCards provides easy-to-use, objective tools and educational resources that help people do everything from making credit card comparisons to managing their credit health. For more information, please visit www.comparecards.com.

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