When it comes to financial wisdom, you might want to to take heed from your elders. According to a recent poll from Edward Jones, almost 80 per cent of Canadians aged 65 or older are satisfied with their life’s financial decisions. In comparison, only 65 per cent of those 44 years old and younger feel the same way.
But that doesn’t mean Canadian seniors are immune to financial woe or mistakes (in fact, a July poll conducted for CIBC found that 59 per cent of retired Canadians are carrying some debt). According to the Edward Jones poll, most Canadians of all ages would leap at an opportunity for a do-over. Eighty two per cent of Canadians under 44 would go back and make changes, as would 61 per cent of those aged 65 and over. Specifically, here’s what both groups would do differently:
- Save more for long-term goals : Fifty six per cent of those 44 and under vs. 47 per cent of seniors
- Pay off debt faster: Thirty per cent of those 44 and under vs. 26 per cent of seniors
- Build an emergency fund: Thirty per cent of those 44 and under vs. 22 per cent of seniors
“This research suggests that while the majority of Canadians are generally satisfied by the financial decisions they’ve made in life, particularly seniors, most of us still have financial regrets,” said Patrick French, director, financial and retirement planning with Edward Jones.
“Younger generations won’t have the same level of financial security through defined benefit plans as older generations, so it’s even more important to have a solid financial strategy in place to save and invest for the long-term.”
Words Of Financial Wisdom
Part of that strategy can be informed by the savvy words passed down by parents and grandparents. The most oft-repeated financial wisdom I’ve heard from my parents? Save, save, save. Use cash most of the time, but work on building good credit too (that means pay off your bill in full each month). And don’t use ATMs that charge you, for pete’s sake!
Proving that good advice is timeless, the guidance their own parents gave them is more or less the same: try to save a little of every paycheque, don’t spend beyond your means and be wary of credit cards and installment payments.