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Millennials and our Money Print E-mail
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Written by By Thamar Jones   
Thursday, 23 November 2017 00:00

Youths today, are often referred to as millennials for having been born in or near the new millennium. One of the things we millennials have found and continue to find out is that life can get expensive; I am talking about the cost of simply staying alive. If you cannot relate then maybe you have not come into full independence just yet.

As a young, independent  millennial, I experience one of those “aha moment” every time I go to the store to purchase things that  I formerly paid no attention to and took for granted; such as tooth paste and purified water. Growing up with my mom and dad, things like toiletries and drinking water were just always there. They were never things that I ever gave any thought to. Although they cost relatively little compared to most of my other expenditures, these are the things that remind me daily that I am officially an adult, responsible for financing my own existence.

Obviously, it’s best to get a handle on how to manage your money from early on in life; preferably during the high school and college years, before you are likely to truly dig yourself into a hole. The good news is that research shows that this age group is actually more engaged than our older siblings when it comes to money. We are credited with being more proactive about earning it, more interested in saving it, and less willing to go into debt; perhaps because we have seen the damaging effects of debt on our parents.

So I’ve dug up some tips that may help us to be more fiscally responsible.

1. Stretch your dollar: Nicole Lapin, the author of Rich Bitch, a financial guide for young professional women, explained some ways you can stretch your dollar and save money.

“Go on a spending freeze with your partner, colleagues or best friends,” she said. “Create a support system, and help each other. And, of course, make it fun!”

For example, “instead of having a girls’ night out at that new bar on Friday night for $12 cocktails, have an even better girls’ night in,” said Lapin. “Some Wine, some snacks and some good company go a long way.”

Or instead of going on a shopping spree with your friends, “have a clothing swap where you shop in each other’s closets; one woman’s trash is another woman’s come-up.”

2. Get You a side Hustle or 3:  Having a part-time business that supplements income from a full-time job can help create a cushion in the event of unplanned expenses or any type of financial setback.  So take action, start investing in yourself to grow and obtain the knowledge to start a business. Add multiple streams of income, and make sure your financial output is not more than your intake.

3. Don’t Get stuck In a Dead-End Job: You probably spend 40 hours a week at your full-time job. But if your job won’t take you where you want to be next year then you should invest your time in finding one that will. With 57% of millennials in the western world stating that their biggest financial challenge is not making enough money, the new year is the best time to avoid complacency and take proactive measures to ensure you can save money and reach your goals.

 

4. Quit being passive about your money: Being proactive also requires millennials to stop feigning innocence and acting like they don’t control how their money is spent. Dave Ramsey, host of The Dave Ramsey Show and author of countless best-selling personal finance books, got straight to the point when asked for his No. 1 money tip for the New Year.

“Tell your money what to do, instead of wondering where it went,” he said. “People know what they need to do with their money, but they just don’t do it. Be proactive with your money — do a budget, get rid of debt and save.”

5. Change Your Perspective: Jeanette Pavini, couponing expert at Coupons.com, explained that a simple mental shift can help millennials reach their goals. “Remember that you have the power to give yourself a raise,” she said. “That’s because spending less can be like making more. Get rid of the $150 a month cable bill, and it’s like giving yourself an $1,800 raise annually.

6. Emergency Saving: No matter how much money you are currently earning, save for a rainy day; at least six months’ worth of what you spend monthly should be in the bank. Period. An emergency fund is a pivotal tool to help you survive through financial obstacles that might pop up in 2018.