When your kid can’t get a job

In today’s slow economy, many young adults are struggling to find employment and establish themselves financially. In March 2012, the unemployment rate for Canadians aged 15-24 was 14.7%, almost double Canada’s total unemployment rate of 7.4%. This can be a challenge not just for someone starting out, but also for those who care about them.

According to a recent Statistics Canada report, economic downturns tend to have a greater impact on young workers compared to the rest of the working population. When you’re starting out in a slow economy, jobs can be hard to find – and high-quality, stable jobs even harder. There has also been a trend in the last 30 years that has adult children, some even with their spouses, moving back in with their parents for financial reasons. Between 1981 and 2006, the number of Canadians aged 20-29 living with their parents increased from 27.9% to 43.5%.

Being able to pay off debtDebt Money that you have borrowed. You must repay the loan, with interest, by a set date.+ read full definition and save money early on has a significant impact on your long-termTerm The period of time that a contract covers. Also, the period of time that an investment pays a set rate of interest.+ read full definition financial well-being. If your kid is struggling to find stable work, one way to offer support is to help them develop their financial skills.

4 financial skills every young adult should have

1. Goal-setting

Everyone has goals regardless of income or employment status. Developing a savings plan is key to achieving those goals.

2. Budgeting

Using a budget can help you stay on top of your expenses, plan for emergency costs and figure out how much you need to save to meet your goals.

3. Managing debt

Debt is a fact of life for many young adults, but over time, debt repayments take away from your ability to save for your goals.

4. Investing

Even on a tight budgetBudget A monthly or yearly estimated plan for spending and saving. You work it out based on your income and expenses.+ read full definition, saving a little can go a long way. Learning how to invest can help your savings grow faster over time.

The road to establishing a meaningful career can be long. But before they get there – and after they do – encourage them to learn the financial skills they’ll need for their entire lives.

These resources might be helpful:

  • Service Canada has job postings for young adults on the job hunt.
  • Get some tips and information on youth employment from Youth Canada.

4 key points

Every young adult should be able to:

  1. set financial goals
  2. use a budget
  3. manage debt
  4. investInvest To use money for the purpose of making more money by making an investment. Often involves risk.+ read full definition

Take action

Use the Compound interest calculator to see how even small savings grow over time.

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