Millenials, a fresh term that has been overly used in articles, studies, and conversations these past years. Seems like something is irresistibly interesting about this generation. We can say, it could be the era of the human existence leap; where the innovators of the future sprout. I tend to think that Millenials, with their atypical developing behavior, indicate their intelligence and extraordinary perspectives – compared to clichés and traditions.
As for money-spending behaviors and the Millenials’ viewpoint of success, apparently, a shift has been noticed as well. Nowadays, young people don’t purchase expensive things anymore such as, cars and real estate. In contrast with the traditional belief and measurement for success, possession of material things doesn’t anymore count as assessments for a successful life.
According to one study, the millennial generation who were born in the years 1982-2004, rarely buys houses or cars. In fact, in the US, people under 35 are called ‘the generation of renters’. The big question now is, why?
If you’re a millennial, and you typically get the ‘my parents don’t understand me’ life circumstances, it’s because maybe, they really don’t. Experts say that today’s generation of young people have different values compared to the values of their parents. Youth today sees the concept of success as:
- Successful people rent, they don’t buy properties
- Successful people invest in experiences such as traveling, doing extreme sports, building their own startups
Basically, the current young generation considers success as having the freedom of time, and getting geographical independence. For that, the Millenials would rather choose flexible schedules than acquire a sense of stability working in jobs that require strict hours.
Today’s generation is not interested in material possessions
The technology has made renting convenient more than ever. For instance, Uber or taking a cab is almost as convenient than having their own car, and it’s not even more expensive. They can also rent a place through Airbnb in any corner of the world, instead of buying a house in a beautiful place, and go there for vacation. Here are more reasons why young people don’t invest in real state:
- The young generation likes to travel and they are uncertain how long they are going to stay in one place
- Mortgage requires you to pay for 40 years, and renting your whole life is just about the same
- The young generation typically changes job about every three years, and renting won’t stop them from moving if career shift demands
Experiential purchases are more valuable than ownership of things
According to The Atlantic’s columnist, James Hamblin, “Over the past decade, psychologists carried out a great amount of research proving that, in terms of happiness and a sense of well-being, spending money on new experiences is much more profitable than buying new things. It brings more joy.”
Social interaction has become more significant
Choosing experiences over material things can enhance social interaction, and result in friendships. Friends and social interaction are crucial to wellness, and young people value interaction with others. For that, experiential purchases are more valuable because it makes interesting conversations. Just like what Hamblin’s said:
’Turns out people don’t like hearing about other people’s possessions very much, but they do like hearing about that time you saw Vampire Weekend.’
Material possessions can lead to worries
You know it. Expensive things that we buy tend to make us worry. We worry about its condition, we worry if we lose it, we worry if we don’t get enough of its value. If we buy a luxurious car, we fret every time it sounds an alarm. If we fill our house with expensive things, we worry about it getting robbed. We may worry when our brand new television gets damaged faster than expected. Costly possessions can make us worry because we want to get the most out of it. Compared to experiences, however, no one can take them away from us.
Most material purchases depreciate over time
The times have changed. Compared to the generation of parents where there weren’t a lot of opportunities for new creating businesses, there weren’t many options to get freedom of time, and travelling was more difficult to go to places they want to see. Thus, the parents chose to invest in buying houses and cars. Furthermore, most material things depreciate over time. Even real estate properties get a lower value during a crisis. This may be the reason why the young generation prefers to get as much experience as they could. As for that, experiential purchases cannot be robbed, or damaged, and you can treasure them as long as you live.