Financial Tips for Different Generations

In the board game, The Game of Life®, players make their way through life stages, making decisions that affect their prosperity. Like those players, today’s generations face financial decisions with lasting effects. Here are some tips for staying focused despite life’s ups and downs.

Generation Z (Teens to early 20s)

Accustomed to instant gratification, the “Digital Generation” may need to recognize that financial success takes diligence and patience. Consider these tips:

  • Live within your means. Create a budget and spend less than you earn.
  • Build a saving habit. Make saving automatic by directing part of your paycheck into a savings or investment account. Strive for 10% to15% of your income, and more if possible.
  • Understand and review credit reports. A good credit history helps you get a car loan and a mortgage, but a bad one can ruin your borrowing chances for years.

Generation Y (20s to early 30s)

You could be juggling your first “real” job, college loans, marriage, a first home and young children. Three points to keep in mind:

  • Risk management is key. Save six to 12 months’ worth of living expenses for unexpected emergencies. Carry health, property and disability insurance.
  • Start saving for retirement. Participate in a retirement savings plan at work and take advantage of employer matches. If you don’t have a plan at work, open an individual retirement account (IRA).
  • Save for children’s college. Give your children a head start by saving from birth to high school graduation.

Generation X (30s and 40s)

Your finances may take a backseat to life’s daily demands’ such as home ownership, children and a career.

  • Retirement savings trump college savings. Don’t risk your future to pay for your children’s entire education.
  • Don’t neglect your health. At this age, medical issues can begin to surface. Take care of yourself, and review your health and disability coverage.
  • Create a will. Help ensure your children are cared for and your assets are distributed according to your wishes.

Baby boomers (50s and 60s)

You may have both adult children and elderly parents who need assistance, as well as an impending retirement. Some pointers:

  • Shift your retirement savings into high gear. People over 50 benefit from higher savings limits on 401(k)s and IRAs. Strive for the maximum.
  • Visit a financial professional. Consider seeking the advice of a financial professional if you have questions about when you should begin collecting Social Security and how you should invest your assets.
  • Investigate long-term care insurance. Help protect your family from the potentially devastating effects of long-term care. The older you get, the more expensive these policies can be.

Retirees

The Game of Life® ends when players reach retirement, but not so in real life — you still have years ahead of you. Consider the following:

  • Review the basics. Develop a realistic budget and don’t exceed your spending limits.
  • Manage your income stream. Determine an investment strategy to help ensure you don’t outlive your assets.
  • Plan for your family’s wellbeing. A properly crafted estate plan can help ensure that your wishes are carried out.
Prepared by Broadridge Investor Communication Solutions, Inc. Copyright 2016.

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