5 Outdated Money Tips Millennials and Gen Zers Hate


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Those before us meant well to us when they left behind these money tips. But, in this day and age, though meaningful to some, they are outdated and do not apply to the times. Millennials and Gen Zers, know all too well because experience is the best teacher.

We are facing different economic problems from the past generations – more so for Gen Z, than the Millenials. Some of these problems are unprecedented. For instance, personal finance tips in the past seemed to cater more to men, than women. We also live in a time of high technological advancement, rapid economic expansion, high population growth, and dependency and climate change.

Therefore, here are five outdated pieces of financial advice, that most millennials and Gen Zers would rather turn a deaf ear to.

1. Time is Money

Time is time and money is money. We do need time to make money but money in itself is limitless while time is merely equal to existence – not the money in the bank.

Time is Money is an aphorism by Benjamin Franklin that is claimed to have originated from his essay “Advice to a Young Tradesman”. During his time, a person of trade traded his time for the money he earned. Today, people still think we do the same. However, we live in unprecedented times of rapid growth and expansion precipitated by technology. Technology has allowed us to leverage our time, and earn a limitless amount of money. Though this aphorism may have contained some general truth back then. This isn’t the case today.

2. Start A Side Hustle or Get A Second Job

The cost of living today is exponentially higher for millennials and Gen Zers. Getting a second job or side hustle won’t fix the larger systematic economic problems they face.

When their parents were younger, land or education was not so expensive. But now, how many side hustles do you need to purchase land in Nairobi for instance?

Therefore, getting a second job or starting a side hustle falls on deaf ears for many young people. They are simply just fed up with how expensive life generally is. It’s becoming harder and harder to do the same things their parents did when they were young.

3. Stop Eating Out to Save Money

What is the dream of every young Kenyan? This is a question I have always asked myself. What would be the life we dream of? Is it a life of affluence like our politicians, and celebrities portray?

Since forever, millennials and Gen Zers have always been told to work their ass off. And, if they get it right, they can live well. So they worked hard, got into college, and graduated swimmingly…only to face the harsh realities of our job market.

In this rat race, there is a moment of rest. The older generations continue double down on this advice. In reality, the income from your job isn’t even close to being enough and a side hustle won’t solve it. Therefore, millennials and Gen Zers still prefer to keep it realistic. They set aside some money to spend time with friends and enjoy life. It’s too short after all.

3. Stay Loyal to Your Full-Time Job

Millennials and Gen Zers, are known to hop from one job to the next. Always demanding more pay, more benefits, and better treatment. They are not conservative as older generations. Being loyal doesn’t pay. And if you stay in one place too long, you lose a lot of money because your employer knows you will not leave.

Millennials and Gen Zers know that you can only save as much as you earn. As such, you can always increase what you earn to increase how much you save.

4. All Debt is Bad

Younger generations are often strapped down by student loan debt. Therefore, most are forced to normalize the idea of debt earlier on. While older generations are looking to repay their debt immediately or avoid it altogether, Millennials and Gen Zers are looking to take on more debt. This is because they understand it’s beneficial to building the life they want.

Debt may have a bad reputation as some people deem it morally bad. We tend to refer to debt as debt when the poor take it on, while for the rich it’s called leverage. Debt is what you make it out to be – neither morally bad nor good. Just like an investment account or a savings account, debt is a tool. And, the younger generation now more than ever needs to learn how to properly utilize it.

Learn more: Flat Interest Rate vs Reducing Balance Rate, Which One Saves You Money?

5. The 30% Rule

Have you ever heard of the personal finance gospel of the 30% rule?

It says that you should budget 30% of your gross monthly income for housing costs. It is a great rule but might be hard to strictly stick by. Consider how different life choices are among Millennials and Gen Zers.

If you earn a six-figure income and you live in a low-cost area, there is no need to spend so much. And, if you love living in a big city and decide that you do not need a car, you can afford to spend much more on housing. Therefore, all that matters is that you are making strides toward your financial goals. If you are saving, paying off debt, and investing, then the amount you spend on housing is irrelevant.

In A Nutshell

Millennials and Gen Zers would rather turn a deaf ear to advice with regard to eating out, debt, rent, side hustles, and more. The times have changed, and we must change with the times. What may have worked with our parents, isn’t working now. The cost of living is exponentially high, while wages largely stay the same in most jurisdictions.

Image credits: Top by Nappy via Pexels

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Irene Makanga
Irene has an MBA in Finance and is an avid businesswoman, passionate about financial literacy.


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