Financial planner Joe Pitzl, 34, says Millennials like himself have a different way of absorbing information than their parents and grandparents, and as a result planners in that age group take a more collaborative approach.
As reported in a recent USA Today article, titled “For Millennials goal is financial freedom,” some financial planners are finding that Millennials prefer to work with those who understand their generation. They don’t respond to the same advice given to their parents, and they’re really looking for coaching on financial health as opposed to traditional financial strategies.
This is a group that’s probably going to have several jobs in their lifetime and is used to being able to get answers with the click of a button. Many Millennials also may have a ton of student debt and may have had trouble finding a job which means that the financial strategies that worked for their Baby Boomer or Gen X parents might not fit their circumstances.
The article quotes one financial planning firm that targets Millennials. That firm noted that traditionally financial firms have emphasized the management of assets; however, the average Millennial doesn’t have much in terms of assets and is just starting his or her career. To appeal to Millennials, this firm bills itself as a “personal trainer”—guiding clients to financial health. For young professionals, these experts say that financial freedom to chart their own course is a higher priority than saving money for retirement. Likewise, the article explains that purchasing a home is also not always a top priority to younger adults who may prefer urban living, or need to relocate to chase their professional goals.
Estate planning for Millennials can also be designed to meet differing priorities and needs. For example, research shows that Millennials are marrying much later in life than previous generations. According to research from the Pew Research Center titled “Millennials in Adulthood,” only 26% of 18-to-33-year-olds are married. In comparison, 36% of Generation X, 48% of Baby Boomers and 65% of the members of the Silent Generation were married during that same age range. With this and the preference for digital documentation over hard copy documents in a shoe box under the bed or a safety deposit box, estate planning should be important to Millennials. Without proper estate planning in place, your assets may: (1) be difficult to identify; and (2) not go to the people you would intend them to.
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Reference: USA Today (April 11, 2015) “For Millennials goal is financial freedom”