Debt Causes Relationship Tension for Millennials
It’s mentally and financially taxing for all age groups.
Find personal finance news and statistics for America’s youngest breadwinners.
Millennials comprise a generation that come of age during the worst economic period in our country after the Great Depression. Growing up during and after the Great Recession gave has given them some unique perspectives on money. They saw their parents lose everything during the real estate collapse in 2008 and the subsequent 2009 stock market crash. The graduated from college with crushing student loan debt and limited employment opportunities in a weak job market. All of this changed how they view their financial world.
The articles in this section follow current financial trends with America’s youngest breadwinners. You can see how Millennials are faring with student debt, credit and homeownership. Below the articles, you can find more information on the overarching trends that impact what is now the biggest consumer segment in the U.S.
It’s mentally and financially taxing for all age groups.
Nearly half of prospective homebuyers born in the ’80s till the mid-90s don’t know where to begin.
How one man spent 65 days in Europe for less than the cost of a Starbucks run
Those closest to retirement are the most optimistic about getting out of debt.
People put weird things on their resumes. Don’t be one of them.
This year, 1.2 million high school grads didn’t fill out a FAFSA, leaving $2.3 billion of free money behind.
Baby boomers say they are financially ready for retirement. Most say that living life on the cheap side will leave you more money in your later years.
No savings, poor credit are adding up as problem for the generation.
It seems the more money parents have, the more their children demand.
Despite their joy, not putting importance in finances does hurt the generation.
Unemployment rates of black women today are nearly double the national average of all women 10 years ago.
Older citizens are also doing better than younger ones.
But many aren’t buying a house — because they can’t save the money.
They pay them off more often, but they have too darn many of them.
And they’re more stressed about money than their parents and grandparents
It could be vital to compatibility, but best not reveal too much too soon
The generation is looking for cards that offer more rewards
Or how too many wedding invitations can sideline home ownership
The generation is afraid of debt, creating a vicious cycle of bad spending
And the more they talk, the happier they are
People say sinking money into the housing market is the safest way to shore up cash, but is it?
Millennials with lower credit scores struggle to make ends meet.
Workers spend an average of five hours a week on their phones doing nonwork things and their employers don’t like it. They also think their workers are doing it more often than they really are.
More Americans are reconsidering whether they should own their house.
They’re also more likely to want to learn about credit.
But they’re looking to change that by improving their credit scores
They’re worried about money more than their jobs and relationships
And understand they need credit to buy them, even if it might mean fewer lattes
But their growing debt apathy may have payoffs for all
They’re the furthest from retirement, but it’s still one of their main goals.
For the first time in a decade, scholarships and grants cover a third of college costs.
Trust me, you’ll never guess what it is.
Because of the recession, Gen Xers are still struggling to pay off the majority of their mortgages — and are falling behind older and younger generations in the process.
No really, there’s a report that says so.
Women are suffering from student loan debt at a higher rate than men, and this first-person account of drowning in debt shows it.
Baby Boomers still lead in total participitation, but the youngest generation in the workforce leads growth in use over past five years.
Group had less help from parents, learned more on their own than their more successful counterparts.
She started blogging at 16 years old, and a few years later became a full-fledged entrepreneur.
Think it means being rich? Think again.
And that’s a good thing, since we aren’t saving enough anyway.
They believe they should cover their expenses at an earlier age – despite the fact that they still live at home.
The test on basic money knowledge has been administered twice — and Americans failed it both times
They’re out-saving Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, not to retire — but to work their dream jobs and travel.
Facing higher costs, teens are relying more on scholarships, grants and their own savings.
Most borrowers have no idea what they’ll owe in the future – or even how many years their loans are for
They are more conservative with their money at younger ages than previous generations
Having a credit score under 700 is related to difficulties holding onto jobs and living on your own.
College graduates value their degrees even though they can’t afford to live on their own.
They are more willing to give up financial stability for smartphones, than younger generations.
Most moms say their adult children aren’t ready to live on their own and only one-third of young adults are looking to move out of their parent’s house.
The Credit CARD Act of 2009 placed tight restrictions on how credit card issuers could market cards on college campuses. It also prohibited the approval of credit card applications to anyone under the age of 21. The goal was that Millennials would be less likely to rack up serious credit card debt during school. The side effect was a generation that was more wary of credit cards.
Roughly two in five (41%) of Millennials view credit cards with fear and over three quarters (76%) of Millennials don’t see credit cards as a status symbol. Oddly enough, however, when Millennials chose a credit card, they make some interesting choices. A credit card went “viral” in 2017 largely thanks to Millennials that had a $450 annual fee. Most experts tell you to avoid annual fee credit cards, but Millennial snapped this card up in droves.
More than half of Millennials (53%) report they have high anxiety about losing their job, compared to just 29% of all Americans. Then 67% stress about savings compared to 50% of the general population. Plus, over 23% say that financial stress makes them physically ill, while 20% say it contributes to their depression.
This higher level of financial stress may be attributed to how they grew up. The Great Recession saw many households lose their long-term saving strategy as 401(k) assets plummeted. Millennials also came of age during a period of historically high unemployment rates, particularly among youth. This environment likely created a great sense of urgency, as well as one of impending doom.
Millennial consumers face record breaking challenges with student loan debt. The average student graduates with enough debt to purchase a nicely equipped sedan (to the tune of over $35,000).
This level of debt easily puts many entry level workers well above the debt-to-income ratio needed to qualify for significant financing. Purchasing a first home is out of the question in many cases, even if they get help with the down payment. They simply can’t afford the burden of mortgage payments plus student loans.
This has also led to lower rates of marriage for Millennials in the 20s. Millennials often delay starting a family because instead of the benefit of two incomes, they get the anchor of twice the student loan debt. When you consider that the estimated cost to raise a child to the age of 18 (without education costs) is over $250,000, it’s no wonder that many Millennials feel like they’re not in a position to start a family.
On the other hand, however, Millennials are more likely to cohabitate faster AND merge bank accounts into joint accounts. They’re doing this even before they get married.
A 2017 study found that 90% of Millennials view saving for retirement as their primary goal, versus 40% who opt for starting a family. Remember, many Millennials saw how weak their parents’ retirement strategies were during the Great Recession. That dramatic loss of life savings left a serious impression; one that may have inspired Millennials to be more diligent about starting retirement savings in their 20s, instead of putting it off like many Baby Boomers and Gen Xers.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Financial experts have been telling people for years that they need to start saving more earlier. They also advise taking a more active role in your own financial planning and being aware of how investments like mutual funds work. If this really has sunk in with Millennials, then we could see a decreasing trend in the retirement crisis and Millennials grow older.
You’d think given all the uphill battles with finance that Millennials have, they’d be completely devoted to achieving the highest income possible. But multiple pools, surveys and employment data studies show that the bottom line isn’t most Millennials’ bottom line.
Millennials want jobs that make a difference. They want perks that make them happy and comfortable at work instead of offering any financial benefit. In fact, one survey found that a majority of Millennials would look more favorably on an employer if one of the benefits they offered was allowing pets in the office. Millennials want a happy, fun and socially interactive work environment, even if it might not pay as well as a cubicle job.
This creates a bit of a financial paradox. Millennials don’t want to be married to a job because it has a nice paycheck, but they’re also more stressed than any other generation about money. They want to live for today, but put all their financial focus on ensuring they’re not destitute later in life. It will be interesting to see as Millennials grow older (and hopefully wiser) how their financial perspective will evolve. Will they fall in line with Gen Xers and Boomers or continue to march to the beat of their own financial drum?
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