With the spring upon us many are looking to do some spring cleaning, and these days that doesn’t just mean cleaning out closets or sprucing up the yard. Just about two-thirds of Americans realize that they need to give their finances a through once over too, according to a new study. This means addressing everything from debt and spending habits to beefing up their emergency fund and getting ready for retirement.
The newest Country Financial Security Index looked at what people want and need to clean up when it comes to their finances, finding that each of the generations has its own issues to address whether its wrangling credit card debt or prepping for retirement. While the idea of getting these issues might be daunting it might not be that hard – and timing is everything.
“Spring can be the perfect time to clean out your closets, but it’s also an ideal time to consider organizing and refining your financial plan to set yourself up for success,” said Joe Buhrmann, manager of financial security at Country Financial. “Depending on your financial goals, there are a variety of simple steps you can take to make a difference.”
Getting the basics for Millennials
For Millennials there are two areas that give them financial angst – credit card and student loan debt. Taking charge of their credit score and budgeting may be good places to start for some when it comes to getting them under control, with just 57% indicating that they have a budget and 33% either don’t know how to check their credit score or have never done it.
Its easy to assume that Millennials are tech savvy, but just about half say that they use the same password for their banking accounts as they do for other non-financial websites making it easy for hackers to steal their money, data and their identity. Surprisingly in this area, older Americans trump Millennials with only 29% using the same password over and over again.
Gen Xer’s wrestle with debt too
Debt is also on the minds of Gen Xer’s with just 10% indicating that they are free of debt, when you compare it to the rest of the population where 18% report not carrying debt.
Nearly a quarter of boomers are reportedly debt free. In keeping with this trend they are likely to say that credit card debt is their biggest worry, with 23% of Gen Xers looking to give their credit card debt a spring cleaning. That is 5% more than the population as a whole. But unlike Millennials, Gen Xer’s know their credit scores and are keeping an eye on it. With 53% having checked in to see where they are at over the past three months.
The Country survey was carried out by using GfK’s Knowledge Panel. It includes responses from just about 1,000 adults living in the U.S.