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Millennials Living Paycheck to Paycheck: Avocado Toasts to Side Hustles

Millennials often poked fun at, are characterized as avocado toast enthusiasts, avid users of dating apps, and sometimes labeled as lazy workers. Born between 1981 and 1996, the older Millennials are now in their mid-forties. However, beneath the surface, this generation faces significant challenges. Economic uncertainty has left many Millennials living paycheck to paycheck, burdened by financial responsibilities ranging from childcare to caring for aging parents. We looked at data from Deloitte’s Gen Z and Millennial Survey, a comprehensive study that surveyed 22,000 respondents.

Check out: Millennials Aged 35-45 are Struggling to Buy a House- Here’s Why

Millennials are Living Paycheck to Paycheck

Over half of both Gen Z and Millennials admit to living paycheck to paycheck, with high living costs being one of their primary concerns.

  • 51% of Gen Zs (51%) and 52% of millennials (52%) live paycheck to paycheck
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Side Hustle

To make ends meet, many Millennials and Gen Z are taking on side jobs. 46% of Gen Zs and 37% of millennials have taken on a part- or full-time job in addition to their primary job, with money being the primary motivator.

  • 46% of Gen Zs and 37% of millennials have side jobs 

Types of Side Hustles

Many of these side jobs leverage technology and social media platforms, including selling products or services online, food delivery or ride-sharing apps, pursuing artistic ambitions or social media influencing.

  • Selling products or services online (21% of Gen Zs and 25% of millennials)
  • Gig work like food delivery or ride-sharing apps (20% of Gen Zs and 19% of millennials)
  • Pursuing artistic ambitions (18% of Gen Zs and 15% of millennials)
  • Social media influencing (16% of Gen Zs and 15% of millennials)

Millennials Feeling the Strain from Caregiving

For those with caregiving responsibilities for children, parents, and/or elderly relatives, the financial strain is even greater. Four in ten Gen Z and Millennial caregivers say that their care duties have a significant impact on their finances.

Social Media Makes Them Want to Buy Things They Can’t Afford

While social media can be a source of income for some, it can exacerbate financial anxiety for others. Over 50% of both Gen Z and millennials say that social media makes them want to buy things they can’t afford.

Avocado Toasts

How Millennials Save Money

In addition to taking on side jobs, Gen Zs and millennials are also adopting simple, everyday behaviors that save money and support the environment. These include buying second-hand clothes, avoiding fast fashion, choosing not to drive a car, and eating a vegetarian or vegan diet.

Work Remotely

In terms of work preferences, both Gen Z and Millennials want full choice when it comes to where they work. This could mean working remotely all or most of the time and going to a common workplace or meeting with colleagues once a week, once a month, or even once a year. Alternatively, it could mean working on-site more regularly while occasionally working from home. 

Working remotely helps them save money by reducing expenses related to commuting, buying work clothes, and dry cleaning. 22% of Gen Zs and 27% of millennials cite this as a benefit.

Postponing Family and House

Due to financial strain, many Gen Zs and Millennials are postponing major life milestones such as buying a house and starting a family. Over 60% of both groups believe that buying a house will become harder or impossible, while nearly 50% expect starting a family to become harder or impossible.

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Check out: Millennials Aged 35-45 are Struggling to Buy a House- Here’s Why

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