Millennials: Are you a financial grown-up?
Believe it or not, the eldest of the Millennials are getting ready to turn 35. There’s no denying it: You’re truly grown-ups, getting married, having kids and firming up careers. But are you financial grown-ups? That’s the question New York Life is pondering as it launches a new ad campaign to reach a group it terms “maturing Millennials.” The company has been researching the generation, and Kelli Parsons, SVP and chief communications and marketing officer at New York Life, shares some results.
Q: Can you summarize the most important points of your findings?
A: Two things stood out for me. First, Millennials are serious about money, and they want to be smart with it. In fact, they view financial well-being as an essential ingredient of being good at life. Many watched their parents lose their homes or retirement savings in the recession. Now as maturing Millennials have children, buy homes and build their careers, they value a financially secure future.
Second, this highly digital generation still values expert human guidance. Our research confirmed that while Millennials prefer to educate themselves online, they want to talk with a trusted adviser when making complex financial decisions.
Q: How do you know when you’ve become a financial grown-up?
A: When you make financial decisions to protect someone you love, you are a financial grown-up. Our first Be Good at Life television advertisement features childbirth. This life experience is often the first time that someone is compelled to make financial decisions for the benefit of others.
Q: Millennials are starting to enter the realm of middle age. How will their middle-age years be different financially than what Baby Boomers faced?
A: More often middle-age Millennials may continue to pay their college debt. They may struggle with sandwich-generation stress, being responsible for young children and aging parents at the same time. And, most Millennials will look toward retirement without the pensions many Baby Boomers enjoy.
Q: What financial mistakes do you see Millennials making?
A: The Millennials’ mistake is one that plagues Americans of all ages: failing to make a smart financial plan. Three out of four adults don’t have adequate financial protection in place. Yet this is an essential element of a wise financial planning.
Q: What should they do right now to help secure their financial futures?
A: Act now to make a smart financial plan. If you need to exercise more or eat healthier foods, you may engage a trainer. We believe that a financial professional can serve as the personal trainer for your financial fitness. Some of the most important areas to tackle early are making a budget so you can control your spending, saving for the future and making informed choices to protect and grow your financial well-being.