When it comes to managing their cash flow and finances, Gen Y has a lot to think about. Paying down student loans isn’t their only priority; saving for a home and the future also top the list of to-dos for young Canadians.
A recent RBC poll finds the three most important financial priorities for Canadians between ages 18 and 34 include: owning a home (49%); reducing or eliminating debt (48%); and general savings for a rainy day fund (39%).
“Establishing financial independence is a marathon rather than a sprint,” said Melissa Jarman, director of student banking at RBC.
Here are five financial tips for young prospects:
Live below your means: The key is for them to live on less than they earn.
Fatten your piggy bank: Save up to 10% of what you earn to ensure savings grow year-over-year. The trick is to incorporate savings into an established monthly budget.
Emergency funds are only for emergencies: A rainy day fund should be at least three times monthly expenses if they’re single, and six times monthly expenses if they’re married or have children.
“D” is for discipline not debt: Put together a debt repayment strategy for your clients. Organize their debt in order of interest rates and suggest consolidation if it’s practical.
Rethink your spending: If a client spends $10 a day on lunch, that’s $50 a week and $2,600 a year. Put it in those terms. Someone earning $30,000 a year can save up to 9% of salary by brown bagging. Stress the need to identify the need for each expense.