While millions of Americans have been struggling with debt for multiple generations now, the current batch of millennials might be fighting the most difficult battle to date.
After piling up school loans and credit card debt, some of today’s brightest young minds aren’t even able to qualify to worry about auto loans or home mortgages.
All of that debt has created some of the most stressful living conditions in our country’s history, and to put those conditions in the terms of the millennials working through them, the struggle is real.
And while most members of the millennial generation are stressing about debt, they are all doing it for different reasons. Let’s take a closer look at four of the biggest debt problems that today’s generation is facing.
Student Loan Debt
Millennials are the first generation where going to some type of college or trade school became more of an expectation than an accomplishment. When you combine that with the skyrocketing cost of higher education, millions of young people are saddling themselves with astronomical amounts of debt before they even begin their adult lives.
It is not uncommon today for a college graduate to carry more student loan debt than the annual salary at the entry-level job they take coming out of college, which is undoubtedly creating an enormous amount of stress for those graduates.
Credit Card Debt
Not only are millennials contending with the fact that they are expected to go to colleges that they can only afford by taking on massive student loan debt, they also have easier access to credit cards than ever before.
Credit cards make it easy for young people to bridge the gap that might be created by a lack of salary or the burden of student loan debt, but that is a slippery slope that leads to racking up even more debt and adding more stress to their lives.
Automobile Loan Debt
When you combine the amount of student loan and credit card debt that the average millennial is struggling with, it is easy to see why many of them are unable to afford to purchase a new vehicle.
However, after years of studying in a college program that assured them a good job, there are plenty of college graduates who are “treating” themselves to fancy vehicles by taking on even more debt than they cannot realistically afford.
Once those monthly car payments start to kick in alongside the deferred student loan debts and the growing minimum payments on the credit card bills, the amount of stress caused by debt servicing can be nothing short of life-threatening.
Home Mortage Debt
With massive bills from student loans, credit card bills, and maybe even a car payment, it is easy to see why so many millennials are still living at home with their parents today.
As those young adults are finding themselves getting married and looking for their own homes, they are quickly realizing that the large debts attached to their personal credit reports are making it next to impossible to qualify for a home mortgage.
And when those millennials do qualify for a home loan, they are almost always forced to buy something more modest than they would like on account of the fact that a large portion of their budget is already dedicated to servicing other debts.
With all four of these issues combining to impact the lives of millennials on a level that we have never seen before, it is no surprise that they are more stressed about debt than any previous generation. That stress will follow many young people throughout their entire lives.