Saving habits of the young!

There is a relatively new trend in the financial press of using young people’s experiences to generate outrage clicks.

Articles normally go something like this: young person reveals their spending habits, usually with the aim of buying a house in mind, prompting Twitter rage at how much they spend, how much they save, how many coffees they drink and so on.

A recent article in the i newspaper was a good example of this in action. Headlined “How I live on £69,500 salary while saving to buy a two–bedroom flat”. The 29–year–old who wrote the article described how her bid to save for a deposit had led her to downsize her rented house, cancel a £150 a month gym subscription and buy cheaper flights for her weekend trips abroad.

Reaction was predictably negative, prompting the usual moans about avocados and lattes. In fact, the complaints were so fervid, the Daily Mail wrote a story about the outrage. Headlined “The moaning millennial on £69K a year!”.

The reaction to the article was indicative of a mind–set that refuses to take either young people or money seriously. It was assumed a young person who was speaking about their finances was “moaning” about how unfair it all is. Because that is what young people do. In reality, she was spending some of her money on having fun, rather than putting every penny away.

Of course, a £69,500 salary is far from average for most people. But one of the unspoken truths of the article is this is pretty much the minimum salary required for someone to afford a mortgage in London.

Articles about how under–25s have managed to get on the housing ladder invariably run along lines of living with parents for years and not going out for fun. It is a puritan approach that may appeal to some.

But it is hardly realistic or fair to ask everyone to forgo fun (and by that, think friendships, a romantic life, sports, cultural activities and things generally supportive if wellbeing) just to add a bit of capital to their name. Articles like this money diary may occasionally Inflame tempers. (Did she really need a weekend abroad every week?) But they also deal with money in a reasonable and realistic way.

At Financial Foresight we can help guide people on all salaries/wages as how to best save for future property purchase. Help to Buy ISA’s are a good start, phone us today on 028 9332 2822 or email to arrange a time to talk.

From an article By Charles Walmsley – New Model Adviser
Source: Between the Lines, 23/07/18