On Debt: Generation X vs. Generation Y

Came across this pretty cool press release this morning by SaveUp.com (weird right? a press release being cool? ;)), and thought it made for some perfect banter today. Little pieces of A.D.D. candy for us finance nerds, if you will. Here were the quick takeaways:

Generation X (born in 1965-1980) <– Where I fall, unfortunately.

  • Average mortgage debt: $181,706 (over 21% above the US average)
  • Average student loan debt: $44,270 (82.2% higher than US average)
  • Average credit card debt: $8,801 (over 22% higher than US average)

Generation Y (born in 1981-1995)

  • Average mortgage debt: $161,000+ (7.5% above the US average)
  • Average student loan debt: $40,273 (65.7% higher than US average)
  • Average credit card debt: $4,113 (42.8% lower than US average)

Kinda interesting, eh? It makes sense that Gen X would have more mortgage debt than the others just ‘cuz we’re all a bunch of oldies in there and probably working on our 2nd or 3rd upgraded home by now, but the student loan debt? Why is that so much more than the Gen Y folks? We’ve had tons more time to pay it off!! Unless Gen Y isn’t all that keen on college anymore?

You’ll also notice that our credit card debt is DOUBLE what Gen Y is too. Which I’m chalking up to us having more time on this Earth to rack it all up ;) You know, with all our babies and cars and responsibilities we now have. But still, we should be using our time to CLEAR IT ALL UP instead of adding to it more, ugh… Time is one of the best tools to grow our net worth!!

One other thing that was noted in this Savings and Debt Report was that only 32% of us Gen Xers are even investing and saving for retirement to begin with – wow that’s low. Even IF this 32% represents close to 82% of total savings from the Gen X crowd which SaveUp tracked. Then again all these numbers are coming from a 20,000 “representative sample” of their own user base, so ofcourse it’s going to be skewed to a degree. I don’t know many people in their 40s taking advantage of online technology like the younger crowds…

But yeah, there you have it. Generation Y is killing Generation X in every single category ;) And here’s how I compare with my peeps in those 3 areas myself:

  • Average mortgage debt: $181,706 // J. Money’s mortgage debt: $311,411
  • Average student loan debt: $44,270// J. Money’s student loan debt: $0.00
  • Average credit card debt: $8,801 // J. Money’s credit card debt: $0.00

Two out of three ain’t bad! Haha… Damn spur of the moment decision. Where do you all compare here? Are you a member of any generations *outside* of X and Y? How come we never hear any finance stats on you guys?? If you ever come across any shoot ’em over. I’m tired of us X and Y folk ;)

Have a sexy day y’all.

{Photo by Robert Banh}

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  1. guest March 20, 2013 at 5:33 AM

    “but the student loan debt? Why is that so much more than the Gen Y folks?”

    Because people born in 1993, ’94, and ’95 probably aren’t even in college yet, hence no debt. Ones born in ’90, ’91, and ’92 have probably had only one to three years to take out loans. That’s a huge chunk of Gen Y right there who are skewing the numbers greatly.

    Same goes for credit cards and mortgages. Many of them aren’t yet old enough to get their first credit card or legally consent to a mortgage. It skews the results. We’ll see if it’s any different in about 8 years when the entire cohort is old enough to be out of school and possibly buying a home.

    1. guest March 20, 2013 at 5:35 AM

      Just noticed my math was off by two years. Still, a huge chunk of Gen Y is either not out of high school or only a couple of years into college.

      1. Kacie March 20, 2013 at 10:56 AM

        Good guess for why gen Y might have lower figures. Some are still in high school! Their numbers aren’t so helpful.

        1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 7:56 PM

          HAH! You guys are right. I knew there was a reason I loved you ;)

  2. Cassie March 20, 2013 at 6:17 AM

    Ohh, fun stats :)

    I’m Gen Y, but I’m sitting with the same two out of three that you are.

    Average mortgage debt: $161,000+ // Cassie’s mortgage debt $229,000
    Average student loan debt: $40,273 // Cassie’s student loan debt: $0
    Average credit card debt: $4,113 // Cassie’s credit card debt: $600 (paid off every 2 weeks)

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 7:57 PM

      wanna trade mortgage debt? :)

  3. Lance @ Money Life and More March 20, 2013 at 7:19 AM

    I think the numbers make sense to me. If you’re only 18-22 chances are you’re just starting to incur your student loan debt so the full balance isn’t in there yet.

    As far as credit card debt I could have seen it going either way. Gen X has had more time to rack up the debt so it’d make sense they have more. They also probably run more up after they have kids. At the same time, I think younger people are most irresponsible with credit cards so I might have expected to see Gen Y with higher CC debt.

    Mortgages totally make sense to me though. younger people tend to not buy as soon, especially after the housing bubble popping. Also, I’d bet more Gen Yers might have bought after the bubble rather than a majority of gen X who probably bought before the bubble and got locked in.

  4. Elle March 20, 2013 at 7:39 AM

    Yay, I just met the cutoff – I’m Generation Y. LOL, I feel so young :) I’m surprised that Gen Y has less credit card debt, but I’m also happy.

    Thinking about people in my circle, I think for the mortgages seeing the bubble burst may have helped and reminded folks to not go for the biggest loan. We bought in 2010 and we used just my husband net income as part of our calculations instead of going by the lender’s numbers which was practically double our estimates.

    1. Nic March 20, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      I’m a gen Y’er too (87′) and I would agree that the bubble opened eyes. Currently if I use an online calc, it’s saying I could afford a house double what my wife and I bought (3 bed 2.5 bath new house). Another factor is that the Gen Y’ers might have been a little luckier in when they are entering the market w/ prices being lower. On the flip side, we’ve had less time to pay our houses down, so that plays against us a little.

      In relation to Lance’s comment above regarding younger people being the most irresponsible with credit cards, I’d have to call that a generalization. I’ve got 0 CC debt (on an ongoing basis as I use a CC purely for rewards), and I know plenty of others in my age group that don’t carry balances either. I think that economy being where it was when a lot of us came into the workforce has helped us learn from the mistakes of others in the past overextending themselves (the same would go with taking equity out of our houses).

      In terms of student loans, I agree that that’ll adjust as the entire age category ages to completion of their schooling.

      1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 7:59 PM

        Def. good thoughts – and makes me feel even WORSE for being such a dummy in buying at the peak right as it was about to burst! Ugh… but good that other people are learning from it I suppose… I did too! :)

  5. John S @ Frugal Rules March 20, 2013 at 7:56 AM

    This makes total sense. Like Lance said, most Gen Y’ers are younger and may not have had the time to “build up” some of those numbers. I am Gen X’er though am a bit older than my brothers who are Gen Y’ers and I see an aversion to debt in them that I do not see in those in Gen X. I would hope that they have learned from stupid mistakes like mine, but who’s to know.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:00 PM

      Daaaang that “greatest generation” was crazy good w/ debt! But also comes with it a lot of other troubles too ;)

  6. Money Beagle March 20, 2013 at 8:20 AM

    Very interesting indeed. I’m also in the Gen X category. I’m about 10% higher in the mortgage category, but 80% lower in the student loan category and 100% lower in the credit card category (we have none) with the overall total for us coming in lower than the total of all three category averages.

  7. Matt @ My Coin Blog March 20, 2013 at 8:21 AM

    The credit card figures are the most shocking to me. You’d think that would be the one area where experience would trump anything else and Gen X would have those paid down.

    This makes me happy to be a part of the Gen Y though :)

  8. SB March 20, 2013 at 8:25 AM

    I’m Gen Y and luckily have no student loan or credit card debt. Unfortunately, I’ve got about $306,000 in mortgage debt. Working on slowly chipping away at that though!

  9. Brian March 20, 2013 at 8:33 AM

    I am Gen X. No mortgage debt (paid straight cash homey). Student loan is 10K at a really low interest rate and 0 credit card debt. I’m also part of that 32% that is investing. So I guess I am doing alright…

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:01 PM

      Straight up cash? What are you, a pimp? :)

  10. Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank March 20, 2013 at 8:36 AM

    Interesting comparison. I know many people (both X and Y) who have far more debt than these figures and almost none with less. Mind you most of my friends have no clue about money also so there might be something to that…

    My stats –
    Average mortgage debt: $161,000+ / My Mortgage – $106,000
    Average student loan debt: $40,273 / My Student Debt – $0
    Average credit card debt: $4,113 / My Credit Card – $0

  11. Johnny Moneyseed March 20, 2013 at 8:39 AM

    Is average mortgage debt weighted against the property value? Or is it just a question of “how big is your mortgage?”.

    My numbers would look like: $360,000 / $0 / $0 (unless you counted property value then it would be more like: $0 / $0 / $0 haha.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:01 PM

      Right? :)

  12. Mercedes March 20, 2013 at 8:40 AM

    I’m thinking since Gen Y is ages 18-32 that maybe those under 22 (assuming still in college) probably are bringing some of those numbers down. They haven’t accrued all of their student loans, they are barely out of the house where their parents probably paid for a good chunk of stuff so not as much credit card debt, and I don’t know many 18 year olds buying houses…

    Although, I’m happy to see that I’m below all the Gen Y (born 1983) numbers anyway!
    Mortgage Debt – $157,059
    Student Loan Debt – $0
    Credit Card Debt – $0 (balances paid every month!)

    1. Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies March 20, 2013 at 8:49 AM

      That was my thought, too. A decent chunk of the “Gen Y” group by that definition hasn’t yet gotten to the point where they’re considering $100K graduate programs.

      We’re below the averages for both groups: $104K, $0, $0 , which is nice since I’ve always felt like a cusp-er. Different groupings will put me in X or Y (this one is Y), but my older sister is solidly Gen X and I grew up watching 90210 with her, so I’ve always felt more like a Gen X than a Gen Y-er. =)

  13. Paul March 20, 2013 at 8:42 AM

    I’m from the very beginning of Gen X (1965). I currently have a lot more mortgage debt, just shy of $400K, but that includes two houses, one of which I will be selling this year. Once I sell that house, my mortgage debt will be about average for Gen X. I have zero student loan debt, and had about $16K when I started paying it off, and only took about two years to pay it off ( I got a windfall and used it to pay off the student loans). My credit card debt skyrocketed after getting married and having a child. Right now it’s around $16,500 which is high, but it was around $38K this time last year. I expect that number to be zero by the end of this year.

    I think Gen X is much more similar to the Boomers in spending and credit habits. It looks like Gen Y has seen the mistakes of its parents and grandparents, and is shying away from credit card debt.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:03 PM

      Wow, you’re awesome at paying down all that debt – very impressive. If only you can stop getting it back! :)

  14. Jane Savers @ The Money Puzzle March 20, 2013 at 8:50 AM

    I bet the younger parts of each category have much more of the debt than the older parts. There are probably a lot of those born in the 60s people with no debt.

    You are making me feel old this morning. Just one year out of the X category.
    I have $18,800 of debt and someone about to turn 49 should be clear of debt by now and should have been saving for retirement for years by now.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:03 PM

      Awwww, well you’re the smart one for reading blogs like this!! Ask all your peers if they’re doing the same :)

  15. Stacey March 20, 2013 at 10:13 AM

    Gen X – 1975

    Handed my BA 15 years ago and still have the student loans to prove it :(
    (approximately half of the student loan debt is mine, the other half is my husbands)

    Thought I was the only “pushing 40” person out there still trying to pay off student loan debt! Hate to say it, but it’s nice to know I’m not alone…

  16. Alexa @ travelmiamor March 20, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    I’m a generation Y and my stats are
    Average mortgage debt: $161,000/ Me: $107,000
    Average student loan debt: $40,273/ Me: $0.00
    Average credit card debt: $4,113/ Me: $0.00

    But my husband and I are very luck because we never had any student loan debt and we dont have any kids yet.

  17. Melanie March 20, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    I make the cut off for Gen X and am happy to see how I rate:

    Average mortgage debt: $181,706 / Mel $99,000
    Average student loan debt: $44,270 / Mel $13,000 (Plus $5000 at the end of next year…)
    Average credit card debt: $8,801 / Mel $0 (As of March 1! YAY!)

    But I wonder how much of Gen X’s higher numbers are from the kids moving back home after losing homes, finishing college, out of work, etc. I also wonder how much of that student loan debt is for their kids as well? My folks took out 1/3 of my first school loan over 10 years ago, but made me responsible for 2/3 in hopes I’d be “more invested” in my education.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:06 PM

      Did it get you to be more invested? I can see that line of thought for sure, even though I had the opposite — My parents paid for mine 100% and that got me REAL invested because I didn’t wan to let them down and/or waste away their money! Haha… And I def. kept my high grade pt averages because of it :) Well, that and cuz I felt like it was important anyways, but still – didn’t want to let them down.

  18. Financial Black Sheep March 20, 2013 at 10:57 AM

    Gen not going to say lol

    Mortgage – Never had a “real” mortgage, but my personal loan for my home was $17,000 / Today $0
    Student Loan – Never had one. Paying as I go out of my own pocket thanks.
    Today $0
    Credit Card Debt – Started out with $12,000 Not even using them since paying them off.
    Today $0

  19. Scooze March 20, 2013 at 11:05 AM

    Older Gen-Xer here:

    Mortgage $130k
    Student loan debt 0
    CC debt 0

    My question is about the 68% of Americans that are NOT saving for retirement. What will happen to them? Are we going to have to absorb the costs of their retirement in the form of food, housing and medical subsidies? I am definitely in favor of a safety net so I’m NOT advocating cutting them off, or totally privatizing the government, but what are we doing as a country to encourage the necessary savings now? The system has changed since pensions disappeared and we need to have the right incentives in place that practically force people to save. Otherwise there will be a disaster ahead.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:07 PM

      it’s def. scary, no doubt about it. If I knew enough to come up with solutions I’d def. chime in here ;)

  20. Crystal March 20, 2013 at 11:15 AM

    We did the SAME thing with our house. Big time buyers’ remorse for us. We saw it on a Saturday, put in an offer as soon as we left, on it got accepted on Monday. :( I feel stuck, too.

    Oh, and I also fall into Gen X (1980). Interestingly, my husband is Gen Y, lol.

    Mortgage debt: $332k
    Student loan debt: $3800
    Credit card debt: $0

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:07 PM

      Well, I guess we learned our lesson for next time, right?

  21. SavvyFinancialLatina March 20, 2013 at 11:27 AM

    I’m Gen Y!!!

    NO mortgage, student, car, or credit debt.

    A year from now when we buy our house I expect to have:
    At most $120K in mortgage debt
    $0 Student loans
    $0 car loans
    $0 credit cards (we pay off our credit cards every month)

  22. MainlineMom March 20, 2013 at 11:50 AM

    What they fail to mention in those stats is that there are twice as many Gen Yers as there are Gen Xers. I think that’s important when comparing the two groups.

    I’m Gen X and I’m way lower on mortgage debt and zero on student loan or credit card debt. Thank God for making money on our first two houses and now living in Texas where houses are crazy cheap!

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:09 PM

      Oh man, yeah – for the price I paid for our house ($360k) you could live like a KING in many areas there! Crazy how drastic it can be.

  23. Kevin @ RewardBoost March 20, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    I think the more interesting thing would be to show the average net worth of each generation too, and then figure out why many of the Gen X’ers have the money to pay off their debts, but are choosing not to do so…

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:09 PM

      Haha I’d like that :) Net Worths tell a MUCH better story than random numbers on one side of the equation.

  24. phriot March 20, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    Gen-Yer here.

    Mortgage Debt: $0 (I’m still in graduate school.)
    Student Loan Debt: $14,000 (Won’t be getting any higher. Luckily I’m in a STEM PhD program, so I get paid to learn.)
    Credit Card Debt: $0 (I use rewards cards, but pay them off each month.)
    Additional Debt – Auto Loan: $3600 (Unfortunately, my previous car died and I can’t move within walk/bike distance of my university until my girlfriend finishes her M.S. from another school.)

    Although I seem to follow the trend of GenY to have less debt, I think that my values come from a different place than others that fall into GenY. Both of my parents were born in the 1940s and seem to have Depression-era values instilled by their parents, which they have tried to impart on me.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:10 PM

      I like your name, dude – unique!

  25. Nick @ ayoungpro.com March 20, 2013 at 12:27 PM

    Gen Y here. I think our generation has become a little more frugal because we got to see “the Great Recession” unfold. We watched as a lot of our elders were sunk by how they over leverage themselves. As for me personally, I’m like you J. No student loans or credit cards, but higher on the mortgage.

  26. KK @ Student Debt Survivor March 20, 2013 at 12:51 PM

    Gen Y here. Didn’t realize there was such a large difference between the two generations (credit card debt esp). I guess the Gen Ys are a little more careful with credit card spending after seeing the impact of the recession/job losses etc. on our older friends and colleagues. Interestingly, this whole time I thought I was a Gen X-born Jan 1983.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:11 PM

      when I read up more on it it seems there’s no real cut-off dates for the generations, just different ballparks people/companies use. so maybe you’re in either just depending on who’s doing the research? :)

  27. Kristen March 20, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    Unfortunately, I don’t think we can take anything meaningful away from these comparisons since, as many have pointed out, many people in GenY are simply too young to have accrued much debt yet. This would mean that nearly 1/3 of the data is zero, at least for mortgages (for the most part) and student loans (since the younger members are either still in school or never attended).

    It’s like saying, “Today’s kindergarteners are absolutely killing it financially, because on average they have absolutely zero debt!” Well, duh, of course they don’t.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:12 PM

      HAH! That’s awesome.

  28. Kevin Vesga March 20, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    Generation Y here. I have no mortgage (still living with parents and going to a university), no student debt (I have financial aid for now), and no current credit card balance (my credit limit is only $500 anyways).

  29. Gene Roberts March 20, 2013 at 1:48 PM

    Generation X (born in 1965-1980) <– Born in 1970.

    Average mortgage debt: $181,706 (over 21% above the US average) Mine: $155,000
    Average student loan debt: $44,270 (82.2% higher than US average) Mine: $0
    Average credit card debt: $8,801 (over 22% higher than US average) Mine: $0

    And from a link from within SHERYL's link above:

    I'm in the 9% that has more than $250k saved for retirement in Gen X.

    It says that 76% of Gen X has less than 100K saved for retirement.

    I think that there are quite a few Gen Xer's that are going to be eating tender vittles in their golden years.

  30. Samantha March 20, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    I’m on the early side of Generation Y:

    Average mortgage debt: $161,000+ : $66,000 and falling fast!
    Average student loan debt: $40,273 : $ 0
    Average credit card debt: $4,113 : $ 0

    Woo hoo! Doing great!

  31. Tony@WeOnlyDoThisOnce March 20, 2013 at 2:47 PM

    Really interesting statistics comparing the two generations… I wonder what societal/social changes have factored into them. Great post.

  32. Shafi March 20, 2013 at 3:24 PM

    I told my son when he started going to college: Talk to your student adviser and tell her you would attend one semester and the next you are going to work. Who says you have to finish 4-year college in 4 years. He will be finishing it in 6 and half years. No student loan, not a single penny. At the same, he is getting good experience as well.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:13 PM

      That’s an interesting way of doing it – hadn’t heard that one before. I guess if it doesn’t scatter brain you that much it’s a good plan? I would have to knock it all out in one sitting personally cuz my mind gets too distracted easily, haha… but we all work differently!

  33. Bryan March 20, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Average mortgage debt: $181,706 (over 21% above the US average) Mine: $50,000
    Average student loan debt: $44,270 (82.2% higher than US average) Mine: $0
    Average credit card debt: $8,801 (over 22% higher than US average) Mine: $0

    Woo woo, i’m beating the averages!

  34. nGneer March 20, 2013 at 3:52 PM

    I am the awesomeness that is gen Y because I technically have 0’s all around. However, since I’m married and the finances with hubby and I are joint this is how it looks:

    Average mortgage debt: $161,000/ Me: $70,000
    Average student loan debt: $40,273/ Me: $14,000
    Average credit card debt: $4,113/ Me: $0.00

  35. Edward Antrobus March 20, 2013 at 4:56 PM

    Has anyone ever noticed that the cutoff for Gen Y has moved over the past couple years? When I started blogging three years ago, I was considered part of Gen Y because it was labeled as anyone born after 1980. But posts written in the past year would put me as Gen X, because Gen Y is now restricted to people who graduated 2000 or later.

    1. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:14 PM

      I know, it changes depending on who’s doing the research and what not – would be great to have a hard number for sure.

  36. dreemsie March 20, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Average mortgage debt: $181,706 (over 21% above the US average)
    Average student loan debt: $44,270 (82.2% higher than US average)
    Average credit card debt: $8,801 (over 22% higher than US average)

    12,000 but that is all on 0% credit cards that end in early 2014

  37. Stephanie March 20, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    Nice, I’m below all those numbers! I’m on the older end of Gen Y, and my mortgage balance is about $131k, student loan debt is about $9k, and no credit card debt unless you count a few hundred bucks left on a 0% financing offer on a laptop, which is on track to be paid off ahead of schedule. :-)

  38. Carrie March 20, 2013 at 5:17 PM

    I squeak in as a Gen-Xer by six months – seriously, I was born July ’80. Other half is on the high end of Gen-Y – ’82. Between the two of us, we have no student loan debt, less than 100K left on our mortgage, and less than a grand in credit card debt, which will be paid off in the next month or two. So comparatively we seem to be doing all right!

  39. maria@moneyprinciple March 20, 2013 at 6:11 PM

    Ha, ha! I am couple of years before Gen X (you know what I call my generation :)) but thought this is interesting to do so my mortgage debt is higher than average but the other two entries are zero.

  40. Sheryl March 20, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Forgot to mention mine:
    Gen X: mortgage:130000
    Student loans: 0*
    Credit cards: 0 paid off monthly

    * I was listed as over 60,000 in debt that was supposed to be an ex-husband’s school loans which he refused to do anything with – I was co-signor – and from which (and other debts) he basically went underground to an all-cash living. Helps to live with one’s parents. The only way I was able to pay this was because of an inheritance. Without it, I would still have major problems with this. This is like the Lottery – not something for people to rely on.

  41. J. Money March 20, 2013 at 8:15 PM

    woahhhh are you serious??? what a d-head!! I can’t believe someone can do that to someone like that, how horrible :( and then ALSO not to take responsibility for your debts? Oh man, makes me want to punch something hard.

    1. Sheryl March 20, 2013 at 9:20 PM

      I am as serious as a triple-stuffed mega-oreo cookie. (which is VERY serious in my book). We won’t get into other debts he still owed/owes. *grin* It was amazing to me after the marriage ended how quickly I went from being in debt and hanging on paycheck to paycheck, to have an emergency savings fund, all my credit cards paid off, and be able to spend cash for “anything” I wanted. Everyone has to be committed, or it just will not work.

      1. J. Money March 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM

        I just can’t believe someone who once loved and cherished you could be so mean. Kinda scary, right?

  42. My Financial Independence Journey March 20, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    I’m on the boarder between Gen X and Gen Y, depending on which definition you pick. Thankfully, I’m nowhere near either when it comes to debt burden. I’ve got zero, and that’s how I like it.

  43. stephanie March 20, 2013 at 10:21 PM

    I am neither Gen X nor Y. I’m old!!! :-)
    No mortgage, by choice. I value my indepence too much to be weighed down with a mortgage. Some will disagree with my choice; however, it’s mine and it’s made.
    No student loan debt, and never had any. Single mother of one, put myself through college, earned 2 degrees, while I worked. It can be done!
    Credit Card debt approx $1500 and to be paid off within 2 1/2 months.
    Saving in my 403(b) at 10%, due to be raised in June 2013, and again in January 2014. Pension (thank you to my employer!) due to be raised in June 2013, when I complete another year of employment, which will move me to the next % saved on my behalf. I don’t contribute to my Pension and, currently, my employer saves 5% of my salary for me.
    I don’t think I’m doing poorly, yet I know I could do better. But that’s why I’m here, to read and learn.
    Thanks to all who comment-you are a collective fountain of wisdom! I appreciate you all!

    1. J. Money March 22, 2013 at 10:37 AM

      I give you an e-high five for having no mortgage – I don’t care what the others say :)

  44. @pfinMario March 20, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Could be that student loans have a long tail, due to advanced degree holders. Not so many among those born in the 90s

  45. @pfinMario March 20, 2013 at 11:40 PM

    Wouldn’t mortgage debt make more sense if expressed as net equity?

  46. pd March 21, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    Gen Y – 1984

    Average mortgage debt: $161,000+ / Me: 106,000
    Average student loan debt: $40,273 / Me: $0
    Average credit card debt: $4,113 / Me: $0 (paid off every month)

    The difference in student loan debt is surprising, considering college tuition has only gone up over the years. Plus the extra time GenX has had to pay it off. Are more baby boomer parents paying for tuition for GenY? I really don’t know the stats, that’s what my parents did, and a lot of those of friends/family did as well.

  47. LPC March 21, 2013 at 2:54 PM

    If I understand correctly, the breakdown between Gen X & Gen Y is based on the numbered gathered from people who signed up at Saveup.com. Obviously, it’s not representative on the population in general, so why are these numbers important? It’s a snapshot of their members and not statistically significant.

    1. J. Money March 22, 2013 at 10:38 AM

      You’re right on that – but I still find it interesting :)

  48. Giddings Plaza FI March 21, 2013 at 5:08 PM

    Hey J Money–like you, I also have $0 student loans and $0 credit card debt. That stuff is for suckers. I do, though, have a very large mortgage. Iive in a tiny, 840 sq ft house, but I live in an expensive city. But, to tackle the mortage and reach financial independence asap, I’m increasing my active and passive income. Thanks for the post!

    1. J. Money March 22, 2013 at 10:39 AM

      Awesome, always love hearing that!

  49. Randy March 25, 2013 at 2:16 AM

    Generation Y – all zeros across the board.

  50. Mary Anne @ BillGuard March 28, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    The stats are interesting. I wonder why Gen X and Gen Y are so different. It makes sense, as many commenters have noted, that many people in Gen Y haven’t yet purchased houses and haven’t yet gone to grad school, so it makes sense that their mortgage and student loan debt would be lower. (On the other hand, Gen Y has had LESS time to repay their student loans and mortgages, which is an argument for why those balances should be higher).

    The real mystery is the credit-card debt. I can’t figure out why Gen X’s would be so much higher than Gen Y’s, given that Gen X is, as an aggregate, presumably making a much higher income. (They’ve had more time in the workforce). My only hypothesis is that Gen Y became financially conservative after witnessing the recession. They’re also young enough that they didn’t lose their home equity or their jobs during the recession (because they hadn’t bought homes yet and they hadn’t finished school yet). That’s just a guess, though.

  51. Nightvid Cole May 25, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    Gen Y here, $0 debt, renting primary residence. Although I’m still single at the age of 27 without even a g/f :(

    I was just thinking to myself yesterday, there are parts of the country where a small condo can be found that goes for $45,000. I have more than half of that in savings, so if I got married to someone in the same financial situation as myself, we could later find a job there and buy it without a mortgage.

    But then it dawned on me, that those places have no decent public transit and I would have to buy a car! At any rate, I’m still saving…

    1. J. Money May 25, 2014 at 4:28 PM

      You found an oldie here on the site! Let’s see if this regenerates some buzz, haha…

      And def. keep saving, you can NEVER go wrong with that!