The article “Millennials Who Are Thriving Financially Have One Thing in Common” has been making the rounds on my Facebook page this week. If you’re like me, you fell for that click bait headline and are wondering the answer. What is it? Rich parents.
The above article is based on a recent report from Zillow, analyzing the Federal Reserve Board data on 23- to 24-year-olds a.k.a. millennials. Zillow’s study examines what they refer to as “The Doubly Lucky 3 Percent.” This is what they’ve named those lucky enough to have parents that help them finance BOTH their higher education AND a down payment to buy a home.
What makes these millennials so much luckier than others is that they are not saddled with massive student loan debt. They graduate much more financially stable than peers who fund their tuition themselves. Then, they also receive help with a down payment that is out of reach for most young adults for many years. What are the statistics?
- 61 percent (or 28 percent of all young adults) received financial assistance from their parents to cover post-secondary educational costs.
- Of those who received financial assistance 43 percent are current homeowners.
- Among those who own their home and received financial support from their parents for their post-secondary education, 25 percent also received family support in funding their down payment
I find this data extremely interesting but I think it’s worth mentioning that it does not apply to ALL children of wealthy parents. Personally, I have received help to finance my education and graduated college without student loan debt. So, that would make me part of the extremely fortunate 28 percent. While I currently live at home my twin sister who moved out pays her own rent and receives no financial assistance from our parents. For this reason, I assume I will also receive no financial help for housing. My stepbrother and stepsister, however, received help paying for both college and for a down payment on each of their current homes. That makes them part of the 3 percent. This shows that not all children of wealthy parents have the exact same advantages.