CHERRY HILL, NJ: A significant proportion of US millennials are failing to make adequate financial provision for major health and life events, two new surveys have found.
According to TD Bank, which polled 1,006 consumers aged 24-34-years-old, many wish they had been better prepared for events such as going to college (31%) or having a child (27%), while the ramifications of starting a new job had not fully registered with 21%.
"Major life events such as getting married or starting a new job require solid understanding of personal finance," said Nandita Bakhshi of TD Bank, "and if millennials are telling us they aren't prepared for this, we need to help find solutions."
Apart from buying a new house, millennials appear reluctant to seek professional financial advice, preferring instead to ask family or friends (65%) or carry out online research (48%). Only one third sought out more formal types of financial guidance.
In fact, only around 12% said they looked to their bank for advice around major life events, but 38% turned to this source when buying a home.
Nandita noted that around one quarter of millennials felt they didn't need financial education and believed they didn't have time for it. But, she said, they "need to be proactive in finding education that fits their needs so they can be more prepared for the events they will experience throughout their lives."
And if that was true of the events that millennials could see coming, it was equally the case for those they couldn't. A separate survey of 1,003 US adults, carried out for the website insuranceQuotes.com, found that one quarter (24%) of Americans aged 18-29-years-old did not have health insurance.
"This could be a costly mistake, especially because this group has easy access to health insurance," said Laura Adams, senior analyst, insuranceQuotes.com.
"Young people typically pay much lower prices to obtain coverage via the health insurance exchanges and can receive subsidies depending on their income. Plus, they can stay on their parents' health insurance policies until age 26."
They were also less likely than all other age groups to have health, auto, life, homeowner's, rent and disability insurance.
While there are often specific circumstances to explain this fact - for instance, living with parents or having fewer assets to protect – insuranceQuotes stated that "there is ample evidence that millennials are unprepared for potential financial risks."
Data sourced from PR Newswire; additional content by Warc staff