The current generation of American 20-somethings is drowning under massive college loan debts, along with other debts. Nearly two-thirds are in debt, and those with debt have taken on more over the past half-decade.
U.S. 20-somethings are also more likely to be late with payments than other Americans. Nearly half have stopped paying a debt, have had cars repossessed, or have filed for bankruptcy. Sixty percent of 20-somethings believe that they are facing tougher financial pressures than those experienced by previous generations.
Compared with five years ago, the total debt among people aged 22 to 29 is up 10 percent, to an average $16,120, and student loan debt rose 16 percent to an average of $14,379. Revolving debt, such as credit card debt, increased 24 percent to an average of $5,781.
The number of those owing $20,000 or more in student loan debt has doubled over the same period of time. Higher tuition, stagnating entry-level wages, and increased housing costs have made is more difficult for students to work their way through college instead of borrowing.
Debt has forced some young people to change career plans, put off or stop pursuing further education, or put off marrying or having children. Nearly one in five are forced to move back in with their parents to cut costs.
One of the many things that can trip you up early on in the race of your life:
The dismal numbers in this article should serve as a wakeup call for anyone -- young or old -- planning their retirement. Plan it as if Social Security will not be there for you, and optimize your health so you can work and earn your own income.
In the Vital Votes section, Chip Engelmann from Indiana, PA points out one of my favorite methods for attracting wealth:
You have a relationship with money that you are creating yourself. Your patterns with money are dictated by your beliefs, feelings and language about money. Money can either reward you or cause great struggles in your life. It is up to you to tell money what you want it to do for you.
Carol Tuttle recently offered some very practical suggestions for clearing your money issues that could really help you.