Preparing for Aging: Baby Boomers vs. Generation X

In our day-to-day work with clients, Baby Boomer and Generation X clients, assist their parents and sometimes grandparents (those in the “Silent Generation,” born in the mid-1920s to early 1940s) plan for their aging years. But are those “children” planning for their own aging years? Are they learning any lessons from watching family members age? Who is planning better at preparing for aging – Baby Boomers or Generation X?

As it turns out, neither generation is as prepared as they should be, but Generation X is actually LESS prepared for aging than the Baby Boom generation. Why is that?

  • Generation X has more debt (student loan debt, credit card debt, etc.), which caused them to start saving later.
  • Generation X has less access to pensions and feels less secure in their promised future Social Security benefits.
  • Generation X is even more of a “sandwich generation” than the Baby Boomers. Call it a club sandwich with multi layers: Generation Xers can be stuck in the middle of supporting grandparents, parents, children, and grandchildren all at the same time all while trying to hold down a job and going back to school to get additional education or credentials. Wonder why we can’t pay attention to our own health and well-being? (Yes, I am a Generation Xer!!)
  • In addition to having no time to visit physicians and do the routine self-care that should be done due to the multi-levels of our responsibilities, recent studies by MDVIP, Inc. (WHSV 2014) indicate that this generation is also afraid of receiving bad news, which also deters them from visiting the doctor (which of course, may prevent getting information on conditions early, when they could be treated).

With each generation, we anticipate that life expectancy assumptions get a little bit longer if only for improvements in health care and technology. Therefore, each generation needs to be even more prepared, financially, physically, psychologically and otherwise for a longer life that may occur. Both the Boomers and the Generation Xers have a lot of work cut out for them if they want to be prepared!

If you feel that you are behind in your plan for aging and need some assistance, we can help! If you’re in Generation X, take the time to view our webinar dedicated to planning for your retirement. If you have any questions, free to reach out to me at Sandy.Adams@centerfinplan.com.

Sandra Adams, CFP® , CeFT™ is a Partner and Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc.® Sandy specializes in Elder Care Financial Planning and is a frequent speaker on related topics. In addition to her frequent contributions to Money Centered, she is regularly quoted in national media publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Research Magazine and Journal of Financial Planning.


This information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that this material is accurate or complete. Opinions expressed are those of Sandy Adams and are not necessarily those of RJFS or Raymond James.