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Dealing with the Financial Troubles of the Millennials

There are probably a lot of millennials who are a little tired of being portrayed as they are in the media. I’m not talking about the portrayal of them as lazy and overly-reliant on technology and instant pleasure. (Though, of course, that is a bit of a troubling and inaccurate trend!) I’m talking about the picture of a generation that’s debt-ridden and helpless that’s often painted.

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I’m not looking to perpetuate some overly dramatic or horrific image of what it’s like to be in your twenties in today’s world. But let’s face it: the so-called millennials don’t exactly have it easy right now. More than any other contemporary generation, they are dealing with huge financial problems. People born between the late eighties and the early 2000s are currently dealing with the worst economy we’ve had in nearly a hundred years.

 

So what are the money troubles that our new young adults are facing?

 

Increasing student debts

The previous generations really pushed for this generation to go to college. It’s seen as shameful or strange to not attend. A picture of a destitute, broken future is painted for you if you have any doubts about going. People here seem to be underestimating just how bad the situation is with student debts in America right now.

 

Stats about student debt
Image credit: Jagz Mario – https://flic.kr/p/aECjDk

 

Students and recent graduates are advised to learn as much as possible about these debts. You should know how to deal with student loan interest rates as well as how to save money effectively in future.

 

Rise of property prices

It’s not looking likely that many people in this generation are going to own homes. Even renting property is becoming troublesome, with more young adults having renting less-than-idyllic apartments. For many years, home ownership was seen by most as the sign that you were on the right path. But this seems out of reach for most millennials.

 

Christian Patterson Rental Property (Eugene, Oregon)
By Visitor7 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

In the early 2000s, banks were happy to give mortgages to people that wouldn’t be able to pay off the debts eventually. Adjustable-rate mortgages made sure that the banks could still profit. But since the 2008 financial crash (caused, in large part, by just that very activity), things have changed. Down payments on a home are at an all-time high.

 

What can be done?

The best bet for everyone in this situation is to look toward politicians who are pointing the fingers of blame at the right parties. Much of the problem stems from the fact that the government have spent a long time helping the institutions that got us into this mess. The people who are in financial trouble as a result are often neglected, or even made to feel that they are to blame.

 

Bernie Sanders for President
Image credit: Phil Roeder – https://flic.kr/p/yT3BJi

 

Millennials have had the bad luck to have reached employment age just after George Bush trashed the economy. The older generations who were already in work had less to worry about. The fact is that we have to make people aware of the things in this country that are perpetuating this kind of misfortune. Wall Street, bank bailouts in the billions, the military and the prison industry. In short, ridding young adults of their financial worries means fixing the economy.
Come November 8th, vote wisely!

 

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