Millennials and Debt: How It Can Already Impact You Negatively

Millennials are some of the most technologically advanced, information-loaded generation of humans to date. With all this knowledge and access to it, it’s often easy for millennials to fall into the trap of misinformation. You’re told to take out the credit card; or you’re told not to. You’re told to take out that loan, you’ll pay it off easily later; or you’re told to take a second job and avoid a trip to the financial aid office.

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One thing millennials are notorious for struggling with is control of their debt. As much as we want to avoid it, today’s world revolves around money. But, more and more we’re finding that how much you have in the bank today isn’t as important as how clean your credit history looks. This can be the difference between affording your first home, saving on car payments, and avoiding hefty interest rates.

Disregarding your debt can come with long-term consequences you may not realize until you’re in too deep. An infographic by MBA@Syracuse, the university’s online MBA program, shows just how much bad credit can affect long-term purchases: an additional $4,975 on credit cards, $9.320 on car payments and a painful $30,057 on your first home. That’s not all, here are other sneaky ways debt can impact your life.

1. It can lead to emotional stress.

It’s easy to understand how the stress of debt and instability can lead to serious emotional stress, even depression. On top of that, some people try relieving feelings of depression by compulsive shopping – bringing your debt count even higher! A person may feel trapped, desperate and hopeless looking at their messy finances and it can be incredibly detrimental to their overall wellbeing.

2. You will not be able to afford buying a home.

As you battle through debt, you may be forced to live in an apartment to make smaller housing payments. In the meantime, that means you’re saving less to make the hefty down payment for your first home. Add in thousands of dollars in debt and your credit score may become the roadblock to getting an affordable rate for your humble abode.

3. You might be disqualified for a job.

Companies are frequently conducting background checks, which often times include a credit check. If your job requires that you handle money, deep debt can scare an employer away from hiring you. In another instance, some hiring teams will take bad credit as a sign of irresponsibility and look away from your application. According to Whitman’s online MBA program, 1 in 10 unemployed people are denied a job due to poor credit.

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4. A harder time during retirement.

This mistake, and one of the biggest, won’t be felt for another 40 to 50 years. Saving for retirement is nearly impossible to do when you’re making heavy payments to reduce debt. The average American is only saving about $25,000 for retirement, which is not nearly enough to sustain a comfortable lifestyle after leaving your job. For many, the reality becomes that you have to take a part-time job after retiring from your career.

The good news: New laws passed after the financial crisis of 2008 have made it more difficult for millennials to rack up credit cards without proof of income, which has kept many from spending what they can’t pay off. A few simple ways to get yourself out of debt include saving as much as you spend, paying any and all bills on time, negotiating a higher salary or starting to build credit with a small loan or credit card you can easily pay off.

With a little guidance and education, getting out of debt is achievable.

5 Misconceptions of Buying Eyewear Online

We live in an era where consumers can buy anything at the click of a finger. Even items that once required touching, testing, feeling or tasting such as mattresses, fresh produce, and cars have found a market online. If shopping for essentials is now as easy as a tap of a button, why is it that only 4% of consumers buy glasses online? It’s possible that we feel more comfortable seeing ourselves with a product that becomes an essential part of our lives; or we seek the validation of a white coat professional as we make the buying decision.

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Whatever it may be, there are multiple companies offering quality, affordable glasses online and it’s time to bust the myths surrounding these purchases. Here are the top five misconceptions about buying eyewear over the Internet:

Myth #1: Not able to see what the glasses will look like on me.

Reality: Virtual Mirrors, like this one, make it possible for consumers to upload a photo of themselves to test out different models. This gives shoppers a chance to pick the best frames for their face without having to leave the home. Even better, you won’t be embarrassed to try the risky pair you always wanted to see without the pressure of strangers surrounding you.

Myth #2: I won’t get my money back if I’m not happy with the product.

Reality: Quite the contrary! Most online sites such as GlassesUSA.com offer free returns and exchanges on products. Many web-based stores are carefully dedicated to customer service and making the process as seamless and comfortable as possible, and that service extends to the time after you receive a pair. The same cannot be said of stores and optometrists with customized prescriptions.

Myth #3: It will take longer to receive my glasses in the mail vs. purchasing in-store.

Reality: By cutting the middle man, online retailers are able to process orders immediately. Time between placing an order and receiving product is typically 10 days compared to 14 at a brick and mortar. And the bonus is you don’t have to spend time traveling back and forth between the optometrist’s office every time there’s an adjustment to be made.

Myth #4: I’m afraid to get my prescription wrong.

Reality: Prescription errors are actually more common in stores because they have to send out the selected frames to various vendors to get customized. Meanwhile, many of the digital shops produce the lenses in-house, minimizing the risk of error. Many of these lenses undergo multiple stages of production and quality-control inspections. But in the event that someone does get your prescription wrong, remind yourself of Myth #2.

Myth #5: I need to test the glasses to see if they will fit properly.

Reality: Glass fitting is actually a service offered to compensate for the hundreds of dollars spent. The vast majority of glasses are flexible and anyone can easily bend them to fix the height of the temples to fit. When a lot of these are measured by millimeters, it’s likely that being a couple of points off won’t make a huge difference.

There you have it! The savings, convenience and endless selections alone are worth it. If you are among the 96% who either hadn’t considered buying glasses online or were too concerned with the risks, give online retailers a chance and I bet you’ll never see the same again.