Saving money always seems easier to do on paper than it is in real life. Even though I am primarily a saver, I know all to well the challenges that people face when it comes to saving money. Young individuals or families face even more challenges. While young adults may have some expenses that older individuals do, that doesn’t mean that saving money is easy. Below are some of the challenges that young adults face when trying to save money.
Why It’s Hard For Young Adults to Save Money
Low Salary: Students graduating from college are entering the job market with little to no work experience. Combine this with a struggling economy, young adults are often forced to settle for any regular job. Many of my college friends have been forced to continue working at a restaurant or accept an americorps position because of the inability to find something better. Having a low salary makes it difficult to save money no matter who frugal you are.
Paying Off Student Loans: While I was able to graduate from college without student loans, most young adults are buried in college debt. Most of these loans come due six months after graduation. Even with making the minimum payments, the commitment to repay these loans takes away from what little income people in their 20’s do have. This moves saving money to the back burner. They often fail to see the power that a debt snowball can have to empower them to save.
“Need” for Technology: If the first two challenges weren’t enough, most young people have lives that are connected to technology. Interacting on social networks is part of young adults’ culture. Facebook was created with my generation. The ability to stay connected doesn’t come without a price. The monthly fees that young adults pay for internet on their smart phones combined with the hefty price tags of the latest technology (computers, smart phones, tablets, i-pods, etc.) in and of themselves makes saving money difficult. The price of technology gives a new meaning to the latte factor.
Lack of Experience: Starting to manage your own finances is a difficult thing. Learning to reduce your expenses and increase income doesn’t come easily. Most often, it takes time to adjust. It can even take a few big mistakes to shake people in their 20’s into reality. Many young adults don’t realize the work it takes to stay out of the red each month. It could be that they are used to living on their parents’ income or just a matter of inexperience. Regardless, it takes a little time to adjust.