Dumb Little Man

GenZ and Money: How GenZ Faces Their Financial Fears

People who grew up during the Great Depression have a certain set of stereotypical characteristics that were shaped by the circumstances in which they lived. These are the people who saved every twist tie from a loaf of bread. They even had to wash out the bread bags to reuse them because every resource was precious and needed to be used to the fullest.

In a lot of ways, it is an admirable way to live — waste not, want not, as the saying goes. It’s certainly a lot better for the planet. But over the decades that followed the Great Depression, waste and excess became the norm.

In the post-war era, plastic things got used once and thrown away, the feeling is that there would always be more. The economy grew at a breakneck pace until it stopped and retracted in a major way.

The United States and much of the rest of the world entered The Great Recession and Millennials had the rug pulled right out from under them. GenZ watched as their immediate elders faced rampant unemployment, stagnated wages, skyrocketing college costs, and a ballooning cost of living — all while trying to enter the workforce and pay off the tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt they were forced to take.

As a result, GenZ has become much more frugal and pragmatic, looking for alternatives to college and career. GenZ has financial fears, but they are facing them head-on.

Saving Takes The Place of Debt

Whereas Boomers and GenXers made massive credit card debt and Millennials made massive student loan debts, GenZers want nothing to do with debt. In fact, they look at college as a means to a career. They are open to alternatives, like community college and trade school, if it will help them secure a job and stay out of debt.

GenZ reports feeling much less comfortable with taking out student loans than Millennials, despite the fact that Millennials save more money than GenZers. About 66% of GenZers plan to attend an in-state school in order to save money and 19% plan to live at home and commute to save even more.

During the Great Recession, GenZers watched their parents’ net worth fall by 45% on average, leading to massive instability in their home lives and their parents’ futures. As a response, they are doing everything they can to ensure stability in their own futures.

They are going after the most stable careers they can think of, even if it is not something that fulfills them personally. They will relocate to another state, work evenings and weekends, take on internships and apprenticeships, and otherwise cede any gains in work/life balance made over previous generations in order to ensure they remain financially stable. They’ll give up all their free time to work side hustles and pick up gig work, if necessary.

A Generation’s Extreme Risk Aversion

Protecting their potential income is the most important thing to this generation. It shows even in the way they interact with social media. Despite the fact they use social media far more often than other generations:

It’s safer to be anonymous online than it is to speak out and GenZ embodies this. They only want to be safe and comfortable. Posting about causes online or sharing personal information is not something they tend to be comfortable with.

GenZ is facing their financial fears head-on. Learn more from this infographic!

Source: Rave Reviews

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