BUT FOR LACK OF FINANCIAL LITERACY:
- I could have had a Pell grant.
- I wouldn’t have financed my car for 7 years instead of 3.
- I would have waited to get married until I had saved more money.
- I would have paid my credit cards on time.
- I would have ‘vacationed’ at home a few times.
- I would have invested in a 529 Plan for my education.
The list goes on with ‘would’ve’ and ‘should’ve’. What matters is what you do now! Incredibly, the latest economic reports find that the 1.6 TRILLION of Millennial student loan debt is actually exceeded by CREDIT CARD debt! Below are the leading sources of debt for the various generations.
|PERCENT OF TOTAL DEBT|
|Generation Z (Ages 4-22)||Student Loans||20%|
|Millennials (Ages 23-37)||Credit Cards||25%|
|Generation X (Ages 38-53)||Mortgages||30%|
|Baby Boomers (Ages 54-72)||Mortgages||28%|
It may be getting late for some of the generations above, but not for Generation Z! Now, while they are so impressionable, is the time to model wise money management and ‘conjure up’ opportunities for them to experience saving, borrowing and investing.
Provide Learning Opportunities
Of course, the opportunities you provide must be tailored for their learning development as we saw earlier. When my oldest grandson graduated from high school, I invested $10,000 on his behalf at Charles Schwab. Now that he has completed two years of college and his investment has increased to $12,500, I helped him open his own brokerage account and transferred the profit into his account. To leave it at that would have been to drop the ball, however!
Every Penny Counts!
The next time he came by to visit me, I had him select four stocks in which to invest his profit. I then had him download the Vector Vest investment app I use and taught him how to use it. He was proud to have his own brokerage account and dying to buy some stock! That afforded me the opportunity to teach him how to be a good stock picker! Time will tell, but at least I opened his eyes to the world of investment.
My five year old granddaughter is a different case. Next time I see her, I plan to ask her for a loan–a loan that pays interest!! I’ll let you know if she bites and how much interest she wanted to charge for the $5.00 I hope to borrow…