A new survey analyzed the various financial factors impacting college graduates, including running out of emergency savings (34%), not having a high enough credit score to get a credit card or loan (30%), and seeing their parents struggling to make ends meet (29%). The leading sources of financial stress were paying monthly rent and bills (55%), paying for graduate school (43%), paying for an additional certification (41%) and having bad credit (39%).
To ease financial strain, about a third (31%) of those surveyed returned to their hometowns seeking more affordable rent and 30 percent moved in with their parents during the pandemic.
To improve their finances in the next six months, the primary step students surveyed are taking is investing some of their money (40%).
The survey found that most grads remains positive, with almost three-quarters (74%) of respondents feeling hopeful about the future and 66 percent believing they’ll have financial security in six years. What affects grads’ outlooks most is feeling financially secure (50%) and, equally, feeling confident in their major or degree.
“Graduates should feel proud that they successfully navigated the past year and remain optimistic about the road ahead, especially as it relates to money,” said Rod Griffin, senior director of Consumer Education and Advocacy for Experian. “Getting educated about finances and how credit works is one of the best ways to protect your financial health and prepare for the future. We encourage recent grads – and all consumers – to practice smart money management and credit habits so they can have more financial options in life.”
Full survey can be found here.