Most Americans report suffering from “financial stress,” and for younger generations, they stand out in terms of their reported stress and financial worries.
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A new Experian survey released on Oct. 25 found that 68% of American adults have suffered or currently feel they are suffering from “money stress”—which describes negative feelings and anger related to financial matters. .
And for Gen X and Millennials, these feelings are more prevalent, 73% and 77% of them, are experiencing these feelings.
Christina Roman, Experian’s manager of consumer education and advocacy, and a millennial herself, said she wasn’t surprised by these findings.
“Many of us have seen the financial struggles our parents faced during the pandemic, when many young people are trying to establish or build their financial independence.
While many of the things that affect young people today may feel out of our control, sometimes financial stress is exacerbated because people lack the knowledge and guidance to know where to start.
Roman said many adults have suffered financial losses due to job losses, economic challenges and the pandemic.
“This is true for America’s youngest consumers, with 32% of Gen Xers and 38% of Millennials reporting that they have experienced significant financial loss due to a job loss,” she said. In addition, 36% of Gen Xers and 38% of Millennials said they experienced significant financial losses due to the pandemic.
Witness parents argue about financial matters.
Another cause of stress and anxiety is watching parents fight over money, Roman said.
In fact, the survey found that 65% of Gen Xers and 61% of Millennials reported witnessing their parents argue often or rarely growing up.
Lack of financial education
Finally, Roman said, financial education may be contributing to the stress young people feel today.
“A majority of Gen Gens – 74% – and Millennials – 75% – said more financial education would help reduce their financial stress,” said Roman.
What can you do to relieve this stress?
According to Roman, Experian’s goal is to normalize conversations about money and financial stress and connect consumers with the financial education and resources needed to reduce stress and bring financial power to everyone.
Find trusted sources
In turn, she recommends finding trusted resources that can answer your credit questions.
“Knowledge is truly power and one of the first steps to overcoming financial stress,” she said. “In this age of social media and information overload, it can be difficult to identify credible sources for financial knowledge.”
However, she added, there are many educational resources on Experian’s website, including the Ask Experian blog, which has answers to many common questions about credit and personal finance.
Make a ring
Don’t be afraid to look at your credit report and find out what’s on there, Roman said.
“Doing so is one of the best ways to see where you stand from a credit standpoint,” she says, explaining that you can get your credit report and FICO Score for free through the Experian mobile app.
You can also get a free credit report from each of the three credit bureaus once a week at AnnualCreditReport.com, she added.
Additionally, she said, there are some specific factors to consider, such as usage rate and payment history.
“Remember, credit can be a financial tool, debt can be a financial problem,” she added. “Most things young people want in life, whether it’s buying a house, renting an apartment or buying a car, they need a strong credit history. Addressing the factors that affect your credit score can help you improve your credit rating over time to qualify for better rates and terms.
Use tools to help you build or improve your credit history
Consumers can get credit to pay bills like video streaming service bills, cell phone bills, rent payments and more through Experian Boost, Roman said.
In addition, she said, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) has customized resources available to help young consumers who want more personalized financial assistance.
“While reducing financial stress takes a multifaceted approach and depends in many ways on a consumer’s unique financial situation, our research found a common theme: more education makes consumers feel better about their finances,” Roman said.
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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Nearly Three-Quarters of Millennials and Gen Z Report Suffering from ‘Financial Damage’ – 3 Main Causes and Expert Advice