Unlike generations past, the burdens of financial security are becoming increasingly placed on the individual. Consider pensions. For many millennials, pensions were a fundamental part of their parents’ retirement savings, but today most workers cannot expect to receive one after retirement. “We have children who were raised by these folks, so their understanding of money and what will happen in the future is different,” says Ian Harvey, certified financial planner at the Financial Planning Association.

Imagining retirement

For many millennials, career timelines are not what they once were. In general, people aren’t working for the same firm for 30 years — at least not the ones they start with at the beginning of their careers. “The assumption is that millennials are impatient and not loyal to firms,” considers Harvey. The truth is that young people leave jobs because of less-than-ideal circumstances and a desire to improve their lives. For these reasons, retirement is likely to look different for millennials and because of this, many are focused on the present. “With lack of pensions and fears of minimizing social security,” Harvey comments, “they look at the world as something they want to experience while they are able.”

Tips for financial planning

First and foremost, Harvey recommends that all millennials take a hard look at money coming in and money going out. Are you spending on anything that you simply aren’t using? Gym memberships and streaming accounts that go unused are just burning a hole in your wallet. This isn’t to say that millennials are wasting their money on lattes or avocado toasts, but rather, to make sure you're getting the chance to enjoy the things you buy.

Financial planning services with lower rates for young professionals are becoming increasingly popular and can help millennials review regular buying habits, necessities, and short- and long-term goals. Today’s financial planners will also likely differ from those of previous generations’, but the priority is to find a service or firm who understands today’s particular challenges for millennials.