Millennials - we know you have a unique relationship with money and manage your finances way differently than your parents’ or grandparents’ did at your age. Those differences, as well as stereotypes about millennials, have led to a bad financial rap for Generation Y.
Because Rockland Trust serves thousands of customers across multiple generations, we have a window into how behavior differs based on age. And what we are going to say might just surprise you. Let’s bust some common myths about how your generation handles its money:
MYTH 1: Millennials aren’t buying homes and having babies
THE REALITY: Due to a variety of factors, Generations Y and beyond are living life much differently than older generations. While you may be reaching traditional milestones later in life than expected, you are getting married, buying houses and having children. For example, millennials are buying more homes than any other age group according to an article in the New York Times. Between July 2016 and June 2017, those 37 or younger bought 36 percent of all homes sold.
The timing of life events, like starting a family, has a significant impact on finances. For instance, marriage and homeownership can have tax benefits, and having children introduces a number of other financial considerations, such as saving for a college education.
MYTH 2: Millennials don’t know how to budget
THE REALITY: Some might think that if you’re part of the generation that grew up playing The Oregon Trail, you are less savvy about budgeting or handling your finances because of the massive student loan debt your generation carries - millennials owe an average of $37,000 in student loans - but it’s actually the opposite.
Quips about avocado toast aside, you do have a keen understanding of budgeting and smart money management skills because you are managing this debt. Further, you’re finding creative ways to engage in your passions and make a little extra money, such as starting a side hustle in order to pay off debt faster and to save for other big life events.
MYTH 3: Millennials aren’t saving or investing enough money
THE REALITY: Speaking of savings, this myth is not specific to one generation. We all could be saving more. There are many options for this generation to build up savings. For example, one third of millennials like you are saving for retirement, perhaps through an employer-sponsored plan like a 401(k). There are a number of options outside of the traditional 401(k) for saving for retirement, such as a Roth IRA.
The same can be said for investing. It can be tough to do it on your own, especially due to uncertainty and fluctuations. However, working with a knowledgeable partner can help you, regardless of generation, make the right financial moves to best meet your goals.
Rockland Trust financial experts know a thing or two about setting and achieving financial goals. We can answer questions like whether you’re ever going to be able to pay off your student loans or buy your first home and provide reassurance that you’re on the right track financially. Please head into one of our friendly branches to experience our expertise and advice in-person.
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