Did your grandparents save everything? Did your aunt give you a savings bond every year for your birthday? What about that cousin who uses an app to transfer money whenever he needs to pay rent to his roommate?
Every generation has unique money habits, but think twice before you roll your eyes! There’s some valuable advice to be had.
The Greatest Generation: Thrift
Perhaps you have parents or grandparents who were born between 1901 to 1924 (commonly dubbed the “Greatest Generation”). The most common money habit associated with this generation? Thrift. Many lived through times of hardship and deprivation, and as a result they were careful with their finances, often carefully balancing their checkbooks daily, saving as much as they could, and not buying a new appliance or car if the old one could be fixed.
The money habit you should steal? Frugality! According to a recent survey, 69 percent of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings. You can almost always find ways to cut back on spending, such as your cable or phone data. And put away that extra cash; every little bit adds up, and it can give you that extra peace of mind that comes with knowing you have emergency savings stashed away.
Baby Boomers: Plan for Retirement
Granted, baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) are probably thinking harder about retirement right now than younger generations. But they’re planning ahead! Eighty percent of eligible baby boomers contribute to their workplace retirement plans, like 401(k)s. Still, many are concerned that they just don’t have enough saved.
The money habit takeaway here? Keep saving for retirement! The younger you are, the more time you have to allow your contributions to accrue, which means more income when you retire.
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Generation X: Do Your Research
Generation X (the generation born between 1961 and 1981) gets a lot of credit for keeping themselves informed on their investment options. They’re more likely to do their own research and give themselves more control over their financial decisions.
What money habits can you learn from Gen X? Do your homework! Research different investment options, and make sure you understand everything you can about fees and what your eventual investment goal will be. By keeping yourself informed, you’ll be able to take charge of your own financial future!
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Millennials: Plastic Isn’t Fantastic
Say what you will about millennials (typically those born between 1980 and 2000), but they tend to be much more suspicious of credit card debt than previous generations. A recent study shows that up to 63 percent of millennials don’t have a credit card at all.
What’s the takeaway from the millennials? Having a credit card is actually an important way to build credit, but be wary of debt! Interest rates on credit cards can be high, so paying off your balance monthly is great step towards building your credit score without getting into financial trouble. When used wisely, credit cards are a great tool, but if you’re worried about carrying a balance, stick with a debit card.
Coverage for All Generations
Need a little extra guidance about reaching your goals? Whatever generation you belong to, Farm Bureau can help protect what matters most to you. Talk to your local Farm Bureau agent today to learn about how you can protect your world.