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Are You as Financially Secure as You Expected to Be?

USA Today profiled the financial situation of Gen X (which they define as those born from 1965 through 1980) and found that most of them are surprised they're not as secure financially as their education levels and income would suggest. About 20 percent of adults in their 30s are still paying college loans, nine out of 10 consumers in their 30s are in credit card debt, and most are struggling to save for retirement while paying down their debt-loads. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, more than one in three workers ages 35 to 44 aren't setting aside any money for retirement, and among those ages 25 to 34, 45 percent aren't saving.

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graduatedsqueaks graduatedsqueaks 9 years
well, I know what my plan is...and I'm working on it. I definitely think I'm heading in the right direction!
jennjennnbubba jennjennnbubba 9 years
psh.... no!
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I don't think I'll ever be as financially secure as I want to be.
emalove emalove 9 years
Yes, my husband and I are pretty financially stable...I make good money, he does too, we don't have too too much debt, we have a decent-sized savings account, we have enough money to buy what we need AND have some fun, so I'd say we're doing all right.
Beauty Beauty 9 years
I should add that I live pretty frugally, and that is another good habit that has helped. I mean, I save about a third of my gross income. Saving money is part of creating that financial security.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
On the road there, I think...
Beauty Beauty 9 years
I guess I always thought that I would own my own place by now, but considering the student loans and high cost of living in SF, it's just not going to happen. I did make some good decisions when I was 22 or so. I started investing for retirement, I've always kept my rent low by living in places that are nice enough but not luxurious, and I don't keep credit card debt. For the longest time, it seemed like these habits weren't doing much, but now I'm starting to see them pay off.
looseseal looseseal 9 years
I don't think I ever seriously expected to be stinking filthy rich. Just wanted a little decent place to live, food to eat, bills paid, occasional travel. Is that really so much to ask? Oh, but that first thing on the list "decent place to live" is hella expensive. Sometimes I feel like our current time is a lot like feudal times in which the people who own the land calls the shots and the rest of us are but peasants and serfs. Then something like the sub-prime housing thing happens and I'm not so sure being a landowner is as comfortable as it seems. It's like this: I can choose to go somewhere with unaffordable real estate where I can find work, or go somewhere with affordable real estate but I wouldn't be able to afford it if I move to that place because there is no work to be had there. It's like either way I'm screwed. I wish I could teleport like Hiro on Heroes. Then I can live in a nice affordable rural area and work in a vibrant urban area without worrying about transportation costs and travel time.
gabiushka gabiushka 9 years
I am doing way better than I ever expected. My so called 'third world country' gave me a virtually free education, and now I have a great job because of that. My husband made sure we got ourselves informed on managing our money since the beginning.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
i think that growing up you have this misguided sense of what you'll accomplish by a certain age. i'm certainly not as financially secure as i'd like to be. i do own real estate that i use as an investment property, but i also have some debt that i'm paying off in the mean time so it's a bit stressful.
kwikwit kwikwit 9 years
I was suprised by these statistics. There really aren't that many people saving for retirment at this point. I'm doign fine but I've been blessed with a good career and good income. I'm still paying off school loans but the interest rate is so low I decided to extend the payment on that out to my 30s and pay more down on my mortgage.
dcfashionista dcfashionista 9 years
I am just Ok but could be better. I had to replace my paid off car because it was near death. So I have a car note, insurance, rent, and utilities. I bring my lunch to work and I am watching my spending.
McCubcakes McCubcakes 9 years
it's got to be student loans that are putting the burden on gen x'ers. Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to have parents pay for college.
mlen mlen 9 years
i have minimal savings and about 2k in CC debt. however i'm lucky enough to have no student loans for undergrad or grad school (thank you parents) and i do make an effort to contribute to both my 401(k) and IRA. I live at home to save on rent but i end up spending that money a little too frivlously! i'd say i'm doing ok- but def could work on the savings aspect.
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
I am doing okay, I was hoping better with all the work experienced with working two jobs and internships during school --I thought would pay off; i even went back for my MS degree. As of now, I have one CC I am paying off I used it after my EF ran out being laid off and I am currently trying to get that to 0 and I am paying my student loans back. I am also still living my life on the cheap. I do not own a car, I take the bus everywhere (thank you CTA). I am happy that I am living alone and able to take care of myself 100% and that gives me a real piece of mind.
gigill gigill 9 years
I was doing really well until I decided to blow almost all my savings on travel...not regretting personal-growth wise but I'm sure my bank account doesn't like it! That being said, I don't have any debt or loans to pay off, but that's going to change when I move back to Canada. :(
Renees3 Renees3 9 years
I don't have a huge regular savings (ok I have like none) but I put 15% of each paycheck into my 401K. I don't have huge debt, just a car loan and like 3 CC all with less than $300 on them. I'd like to be doing better, but I'm happy.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
I feel PRETTY secure. I got a good job and an RSP account and a savings account and a paid off car and I am living in a home that my bf bought so my "rent" isn't pointless.
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
I wouldn't be if my parents didn't pay for my college tuition & room and board. I think I'm doing ok at the moment, but I could save more.
verily verily 9 years
I make a lot less than money than I had thought I would when I started planning my life as a kid, but I live a comfortable life in a decent job. I'm single with no kids, so my money is my money to spend. I may not be able to afford a BMW or a closet full of Chanel, but I think there are more important things in life. In a few years, the college loans will be paid off, the car will be paid off, and my credit score is pretty damn good for my age, so I think I will be okay. I could buy a house now instead of renting, but I'd rather wait until I know I will settle in one place.
ChimericGirl ChimericGirl 9 years
I have no credit card debt and I managed to finance most of college with part-time jobs and scholarships. I also lived at home and went to the local commuter college. While this isn't as fun as the "standard" college experience, I have very little in the way of student loans (please let the sacrifices count for something!)I graduated a year ago and right now I'm working as a waitress while I wait to start grad school. I make decent money most of the time but uncertainty is the name of the game. I really thought that I'd be working a 9-5 office job after college-I did for a while but I did not fit in with corporate life. Despite my current financially instability I'm pretty happy with my choices. I'm going to grad school for occupational therapy which I truly believe is my calling.
hey1tsjenny hey1tsjenny 9 years
gosh, I'm sure not where I intended on being but I know a lot of people who are worse off. I say my greatest loss is what Uncle Sam takes away every 2 weeks plus some during tax season. Living in Los Angeles is definitely a burden on my cash flow. Cost of living is pretty intense. Oh well, I guess I'll just have to move to Montana and VPN to work. ;)
graylen graylen 9 years
I'm not doing as well as I'd hoped. I know they always say that it's hard at the beginning, but for some people it really is easy (i.e. my engineer brother and sister). I keep telling myself that if I still lived in my small hometown, I'd be making good money! I'm living in LA which doesn't help (hella expensive). I only wish that I had extra money to put in a 401(k). Serious kudos to all of you above that are taking charge of your future now. That's a big deal and I'm looking forward to having at least enough additional income to put a little away each month. Now that my parents are retiring, I see how essential it is. I think that I'm not MAKING less than I expected, I think that what I make doesn't go as FAR as I expected.
carhornsinapril carhornsinapril 9 years
i'm not doing nearly as well as i'd hoped. student loans are a huge burden, and i didn't expect them to be so hard to pay off.
MindayH MindayH 9 years
I am doing pretty well - but because I insist on putting $ away in my 401k I feel a little poorer right now than I would like. Someone told me recently that you need to put money in your 401k while you are young, that $ will have lot's more time to grow than money you put away when you are in your 40's, so I figure that it is better to put away more money now, and if I need to hold back a little in my 30's, I will be ok.
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