Education Cost Concerns Highest Among Young Adults

PRINCETON, NJ -- Paying tuition or college loans far exceeds other money matters as the top financial challenge young adults in the U.S. say they face today. More than one in five adults aged 18 to 29 mention college costs as the biggest financial problem their families are dealing with, well exceeding the percentage of older Americans who identify this as their top issue.

While college expenses outpace all other financial concerns among the youngest adults, it ties with overall lack of money or low wages as the top concern of those aged 30 to 49. And it ranks near the bottom of the top 10 financial problems that older Americans name, mentioned by 7% of 50- to 64 year-olds and 1% of seniors -- those aged 65 and older.

Housing costs also emerge as a relatively bigger concern for younger adults (14%) than those aged 30 and older (9% or less). At the same time, at 5%, cost of living/inflation is a particularly low concern for young adults, perhaps because this age group has not been paying bills long enough to experience as much change in prices as have older adults.

Despite the availability of Medicare for seniors, healthcare is the chief concern of adults aged 65 and older as well as those aged 50 to 64, mentioned by 15% of both groups. However, other issues come close, including paying bills -- for 50- to 64-year-olds -- and lack of money -- for seniors.

Top financial problems facing family, by age

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