There are common threads weaving through the lives of Millennials. As a generation they value other people, they value the environment, they value healthcare, social good, and they value education and the betterment of themselves.
Statistics indicate that there are more college-educated adults in the workforce today than in history. Of Millennials aged 25-29, 40% have (at least) a Bachelor’s degree. Previous generations of the same age group could only brag 32% of employees with a degree.
Just under half of Millennial women in the workforce can brag a Bachelor’s Degree (versus 36% of the previous generation), while Millennial men are also more likely to obtain further education. Though, the gap between the two isn’t as vast as it is with women. More progress still among Millennials is that the gender gap in college grew in favor of women as they are more likely to complete their college journey.
The Attainment of Knowledge
Further education isn’t just about Millennials chasing knowledge, though that is a lot to do with it. It’s also becoming increasingly difficult to land a good job without any type of further education. With this limit on their earning potential, this is pushing a lot of Millennials beyond just a bachelor’s degree and forcing them to risk even deeper debt by earning master’s degrees.
This, of course, has a knock-on effect in other areas of the Millennial lives, though. This is one of the big reasons they are slower to get on the property ladder than previous generations. While their attitudes toward homeownership have changed greatly the financial issue is one of the biggest obstacles standing between them and owning a home of their own.
This has driven a rise in tiny houses and in home lending. While previous generations saw home ownership is a sign of adulthood and it was something to strive for, Millennials view life differently and have different priorities. Older generations were quick to marry, find a career, buy a home, and start a family. Millennials are taking all of that more slowly with a want to travel and a desire to learn and embrace the culture.
In-home lending, Millennials have found the answer to their problems. As they chase their educational goals, whether it to be a bachelor’s, masters, or a doctorate, they take on more debt to achieve their end goal. Over the last decade, student loans have risen almost 85%. This priority shift has provided Millennials with a practical problem – they can either choose to live at home with their parents as they attempt to pay off their debts or they can get in on home lending. This may be renting an apartment from a homeowner or choosing to share an apartment with friends (how else do you think the Friends crowd managed to live so comfortably in NYC?).
While the older generations have viewed this as an arrested development of sorts, the truth is no generation has faced a market so challenging on every level. With wages stagnant, jobs difficult to come to by and house prices rising they are forced to take a different approach to life.