Why Millennials Are Broke—According To Boomers

By Victor O

Gender wars, tissue/water debate, and whether the cereal goes in before or after the milk stand among the most popular social media highlights. However, an underrated controversy is an intergenerational rift between Boomers and Millennials.

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Millennials have always gotten a lot of smoke from their older counterpart. The most popular notion used to be that they’re too carefree and unambitious. Boomers have taken it up a notch by criticizing the consumerist lifestyle of millennials as the reason for their not owning houses and starting families. If you own a Disney plus subscription and frequently order meals with Uber Eats, boomers believe you’re killing your dreams of buying that condo you’ve always wanted. Interestingly, according to The Times, a study carried out by researchers at King’s College London found that most people born between 1946 and 1964 hold this notion.

But how true is this popular opinion? Millennials did not grow up in the best of times. Housing prices have increased by over 300% since the 1980s. At their peak, boomers could buy a nice three-bedroom apartment for $80,000. That same apartment will go for about $310,000 nowadays. So the question is, how many months’ worth of Netflix subscription will buy a house? Do the math, and you’ll realize the problem is not necessarily with the average millennial lifestyle but rather the times we are in. One could argue that occasional spending on material goods is a need and not merely a want in light of modern-day stress.

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Some boomers also believe that, despite the tighter economy, most millennials are unambitious and unprepared to work hard. The flip side to this is that there aren’t just as many jobs as before, and the nature of work is tilting towards the gig economy and social media marketing. So millennials are not unambitious; their interests just differ from those of boomers.