Millennials are changing the way we think about retirement. In the past, retirement meant staying with companies longer, a lower cost of living, and retiring with a pension. For millennials, those financial goals and benefits are far out of reach. With the uncertain future of government funding and pension plans vanishing, saving for retirement may prove to be difficult. Add on an unhealthy helping of crippling debt and stagnant wages and you have a generation in need of a fresh look at financial planning.
With so many challenges, millennials are trying new ways to save for retirement.
1. Utilizing Roth IRAs
Roth IRAs are an affordable option for those who can’t afford to set too much aside. Roth IRA owners get the boost of tax-advantaged savings, with a bonus of tax-free growth. As Roth IRA owners reach retirement age, they can take their contributions tax-free. There are no minimum requirements for yearly contributions. If you decide to go the self-directed route, you can invest in many different alternative assets and really take benefit from the tax-free nature of the Roth. An additional benefit from using a Roth is that you can take money out without suffering a penalty in specific situations. As an affordable and tax-advantaged option, Roth IRAs are changing the way we save for retirement.
2. Selecting Different Investment
Since millennials are struggling to build up their retirement funds, they are very careful where they place their hard-earned cash. They often select their investments based on their ideals, passions, and personal experience. Millennials watch the market carefully and tend to invest in the future – startups, technology, and world-building opportunities. This, of course, changes the game when it comes to traditional investments. Usual “high” banking stocks may see a drop and new age concepts can come rushing in, like cryptocurrency. In any case, the future of investment is shifting.
3. Using Technology
In addition to being selective in their investments, millennials are taking advantage of technological advancements to help them manage their finances. By using different apps and online investment opportunities, investing is made easy. In addition to having your stock portfolio at your fingertips, it’s possible to manage your investments, watch your budget, and pay your bills right from your phone. These changes make investing and saving easier and way more convenient.
4. Paying Down Debts
One huge disadvantage that millennials are experiencing is a burden of massive debt. They are changing the face of retirement because of crippling student loans and credit card debt eating away at their paychecks. With little to set aside, the next generation is looking for more flexible ways to put money away. The main goal for many millennials is just to pay down debt and build an immediate savings fund, rather than squirreling away for retirement. It is much more difficult to focus on the long-term when the struggle is real right now. These issues can have a huge impact on how we look at retirement as time passes.
5. Saving Flexibility
Millennials are very careful with financial planning. The goal is to save, pay down debt, and build up an emergency fund. They want to be able to spread their funds around while still enjoying life now. While they struggle to get started now, many millennials begin with small savings and slowly let them build over time. As life happens, there needs to be immediate access to those funds. Whether they want to buy a house, start a family, or a new business venture, getting established is a priority. These actions can often put retirement savings on the back burner.
6. Balancing Living Expenses and Retirement
Like with anyone, the main goal every generation strives for is financial independence. While this primary was easier to achieve in generations prior, many millennials face the problem of living paycheck to paycheck. With a cost of living increase and stagnant salaries, saving for retirement has become much more of a struggle. When the focus is to maintain your daily livelihood, the future may seem like an impossibility. The goal becomes aiming for the short-term. Without any extra to set aside, it changes the way we all look at retirement.
7. Investing in the Now
In the face of stagnant wages, crippling debt, and a threat of social security bottoming out, millennials are focusing on taking care of one thing they can safely invest in themselves. Wellness has become the main priority, and while financially it may be a struggle, taking care of their health now can allow for a better future. Millennials are gearing up for longer, healthier lives and if they must work past current “retirement” age, they are preparing themselves for it.
Changing Retirement Planning
With so many obstacles and brand-new ideas, the next generation is changing the way we think about retirement. As millennials face difficult financial goals and start saving for retirement, the system in place needs to evolve too. Every new venture brings us closer to financial stability and each contribution is one step nearer to a more secure retirement. If you want to change the way you are handling retirement savings, consider seeking out a financial advisor. Gain financial independence and start planning for the future by contacting an investment expert today.