Lots of people are determined to do a better job of managing their personal finances in the new year. For example, a recent Lincoln Financial Group (LFG) survey found that more than three-quarters (77 percent) of Americans are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to set financial goals in 2018. That is more than double the 34 percent of respondents who set specific financial goals in 2017, and not too surprising since 83 percent of those Americans that did have resolutions last year said that they feel better about their finances now than they did at the beginning of 2017.
Even more encouraging is that a lot of the financial goals Americans have for 2018 involve improving their overall level of retirement preparedness. A new E*TRADE poll, for instance, found that 40 percent of U.S. investors intend on boosting their rate of contributions to 401(k)s and other tax-advantaged retirement savings vehicles in the new year. Millennial respondents were especially likely to say that they plan on increasing their retirement saving in 2018, which is important since this group has an opportunity to benefit greatly from an early start to old-age financial planning.
Indeed, the older one gets the harder it is to find the resolve to make substantial life changes. This is evidenced by the LFG survey which found that the proportion of respondents making new year’s resolutions steadily declined with age. The large number of proactive Gen-Y adults saying that they plan to start better preparing for retirement in 2018 therefore means that fewer will need to make such changes later on in life. Perhaps even more important is that the sooner Millennials can start setting money aside for retirement, the longer they will have for their assets to grow through proper investment.
Consulting with a professional financial advisor can help with this endeavor, something which many young adults appear open to. In fact, an earlier report from Cerulli Associates found that 79 percent of surveyed Americans between the ages of 30 and 39 said that they would be open to paying for professional financial advice, and 73 percent of respondents under the age of 30 stated the same. Both of those figures are marked increases from previous surveys and well above the level of eagerness to pay for financial expertise reported by older generations.
Sources: Lincoln Financial Group, E*TRADE, Cerulli AssociatesPost author: Charles Couch