Looking at the challenges millennials face today, it may even appear like the baby boomer generation had an “iron rice bowl”. Yet they didn’t necessarily live in a welfare state. They lived in an era when people who had the right skills and the willingness to work could look forward to stable long term employment, generous employment benefits, rising wages, years of superannuation savings and affordable homes and an interest regimen that gave the boomers the means to accumulate lots of wealth and own a home.
Today, millennials find themselves in a completely different work and economic landscape. Not only are there fewer opportunities for stable long term employment but the economic environment is not favourable for investment and the property market is beyond reach for many. Besides, millennials are being accused of not doing enough to address the challenges of their generation. They are often characterized as entitled, irresponsible and more obsessed with the short term “Instagram-worthy” cheap thrills instead of the painstaking long-range financial planning and the grind needed to build a stable future. Some of it may be true but most of the time, many millennials are just victims of circumstances.
Still, the generation Y is a powerful demographic that can’t just be wished away. In Australia, they make up 22% of the population and have already taken control of the workplace. They make up a whopping 35% of the workforce. They are ambitiously moving up the ladder and taking control. In the next decade, they will make up the biggest proportion of the workforce and they are also busy accumulating wealth. If you are a millennial in 2018, this is the time to join your peers and take charge. But how? Here is a millennial money survival guide that you can adopt in 2018 in order to take charge of your money and become more financially stable.
Boost your income
One of the biggest challenges many millennials face is that of underemployment which forces many to live on the edge. It is important to be proactive so as to boost your income prospects. You can do that through a traditional career path by sprucing up your CV, taking more courses and networking more often to gain maximum exposure. Employers love team players with excellent communication skills. A master’s degree in your discipline will definitely open pathways to more rewarding career opportunities and higher pay. If you are underemployed, the trick is to work constantly in improving yourself, your skills and your prospects. There may be other opportunities outside the traditional career ladder so if you can spot a gap somewhere, make the best use of it.
Be proactive about your superannuation
The attitude of most millennials is to let superannuation take care of itself. However, it is possible to significantly boost your balances by taking a more proactive approach when it comes to your super savings.
To live a comfortable lifestyle during your retirement, you will require a fairly plump superannuation balance. That should be reason enough to take a pause and calculate whether you are on track to meeting your superannuation targets. As a millennial, one of the greatest assets that you have on your side is time so make the best use of it.
Talk to an accountant Melbourne expert to help you in getting a bird’s eye view of your super savings. Depending on your lifestyle and retirement goals, your employer superannuation guarantee may not be sufficient and you may need to give your super a boost with a salary sacrifice arrangement or personal contributions.
Save more money
Millennials are often characterized as happy-go-lucky and with a liberal attitude to money. They don’t mind splurging their hard earned income on multiple Uber rides and coffee for their friends. But to what end? If you are living a fast lifestyle at the expense of your retirement savings and financial stability, maybe it is time to reevaluate your priorities. Make sure you have an emergency fund that will serve as a “buffer” in case of any financial emergencies.
Put some of your money into some investments, sit back and enjoy the magic of compounding interest. If your retirement is still decades away, you can afford to pursue a more aggressive investment strategy and that means you have a good shot at creating some really good fortune early on in life by investing in high growth assets.
Need you find our millennial money survival guide helpful? Start incorporating these in your money management and get yourself on the superhighway to financial success.