Arlington, Va. — A majority of Americans (61%) are delaying traditional life milestones and following alternative paths in favor of financial security, according to the new study “The New American Milestones” by Life Happens, a nonprofit dedicated to educating consumers about the importance of life insurance and other related products for sound financial planning.
The new survey found the top delayed life milestones include saving for retirement (54%), getting married (53%), and having children (50%). Unsurprisingly, the payoff is great. Of those who’ve delayed a traditional life milestone, 74% have reported being more financially stable as a result.
Motives Behind Modern Milestone Moves
The change in life priorities is tied to emotion, with about half of those surveyed (48%) saying they have personal insecurities – from financial to where they are in their careers — that have put the brakes on reaching certain milestones. A further 47% say that they are saddled with the responsibility of paying off student loans, and a quarter (25%) are putting their careers first.
While Americans are delaying key life milestones, it doesn’t mean they’re not worried about the repercussions. In fact, 77% of those surveyed say they are concerned about putting off certain life milestones. The five top delayed milestone worries ranked in order are:
- Retirement (43%)
- Buying a home (35%)
- Having children (32%)
- Getting married (32%)
- Long-term financial planning (28%)
For the Love of Money
Following a nontraditional life path has not changed what matters when it comes to relationships with our loved ones. A whopping 72% say financial security is an important act of love — with men more likely to agree that financial security is a genuine act of love compared with women – 80% vs. 64%.
“While traditional milestones are no longer making or breaking what’s important in life, financial security for you and your loved ones is a necessity,” said Faisa Stafford, President and CEO, Life Happens. “Our study shows that 54% of people have had to deal with unexpected life events, which have impacted their long-term financial planning, bringing to the surface the reality that our life’s path can change in a second. During this season of love, we’d like to remind consumers the value of life insurance – not for you, but the ones you love; a critical tool to financially protect your loved ones, whatever happens in life and no matter what life path you choose.”
In support of this message, Life Happens has launched its annual Insure Your Love campaign focused on motivating people to purchase life insurance to protect their loved ones financially. To take action for your loved ones, Life Happens has a free Life Insurance Needs Calculator to help evaluate your own life insurance needs.
Methodology for “The New American Milestones”
These results were taken from a random double-opt in survey of 2,000 Americans conducted by OnePoll, and commissioned by Life Happens between Jan. 8, 2020 and Jan. 13, 2020. OnePoll is a corporate member of the AAPOR and adheres to the AAPOR Code of Professional Ethics and Practice.
About Life Happens
Life Happens is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping consumers take personal financial responsibility through the ownership of life insurance and related products. The organization does not endorse any product, company or insurance advisor. Since its inception in 1994, Life Happens has provided the highest quality, independent and objective information for people seeking help with their insurance buying decisions. The organization supports the insurance industry by providing marketing tools and resources through its Life Happens Pro platform, and convening the industry each September for Life Insurance Awareness Month. Life Happens is supported by more than 140 of the nation’s leading insurance company and financial services organizations. To learn more, visit www.lifehappens.org.
KWT Global for Life Happens