“La, la, la la (Yeah)
Wait ’til I get my money right” — Kanye West

TL;DR…My name’s Garrett. I’m sure you want to know more about how to travel more, worry less, and have more money in the bank. I’ll show you how to do that through personal finance content. Stay tuned!

Here are three numbers…

17

30

24

What do these numbers have in common?

Only 17 out of 50 states require high school students to take a course in personal finance.

Nearly 30% of millennials are overdrawing on their checking account.

When tested on financial concepts, only 24% of millennials demonstrated basic financial knowledge.

“Many people take no care of their money till they come nearly to the end of it, and others do just the same with their time.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The California Wildfire

Growing up in a suburban town on the east side of the Bay Area exposed me to the value of money. As a native Californian, I witnessed the booming effect of “The Great Recession” during my most informative years. Wildfires and foreclosures. On rides from school, I’d pass up house after house plastered with foreclosure signs. It was my first true view of how a searing stew of greed and financial illiteracy could leave tender burn marks on beautiful American cities.

The financial crisis engrained a few core interests in my heart:

  1. How exactly does money work?
  2. What separates the “haves” from the “have nots”?
  3. How can households protect themselves from financial hardship?
  4. What gives households a higher probability of building generational wealth?

After graduating high school, I went to college and worked hard. In fact, I worked hard enough to land an internship at a huge bank. Even though working in investment banking didn’t end up being the best fit, the experience further developed my fascination with how money worked.

I noticed a few more things while making big bucks on Wall Street:

  1. A disproportionate amount of people working at these banks come from privileged backgrounds — a fair amount are “rolling in dough”.
  2. Some of the initial separators of the “haves” and the “have nots” — education, network, family resources, support, and access to wealth.
  3. These folks had family members who know much more than the average individual about wealth creation.

Now I work in tech. A much better fit for me and the work allows me to think in ways not possible for a company that has thousands upon thousands of employees and shareholders. However, I still often think about the questions that I had as a teenager, gazing at foreclosed homes out the window on the way home from school. My friends are a bit older and now have jobs, but I find that a majority of us aren’t taking the steps necessary to build a great financial future. Many aren’t taking time to invest in the education necessary to make great financial decisions. How can we bridge the gap?

A lot of my friends may not be as interested in the topic as I am. My hope with writing content about personal finance is to give enough information to my friends and other millennials to take action towards a better future. I don’t plan to do this alone either. I plan to bring in folks who know much more than me.

One of my life goals is to “help make wealth more accessible to more people through technology”. To give more power to the “have nots”. The beauty of technology is that it allows me to just press “post” to share information, instead of contacting all of my friends one by one. I plan to use this power to create digestible, witty, and action-oriented content for millennials with an emphasis on using technology that we already use to our advantage.

Do you want to learn how to save more? Invest more? Make more money? Me and my friends will show you how. I’ve surveyed millennials within my personal network to get a quick glimpse of what people want to learn about and how to make it as easy as possible to reach them. It’s my aim to help my audience gain easy access to information that should be taught in detail throughout school. I promise that I won’t make it “textbook boring”.

Do you currently have a budget? Do you know your current checking account balance? Do you have a retirement account that you regularly transfer money to? Are you a millennial that incurs overdraft fees? Do you currently have any outstanding investments?

Regardless of your answers to any of those questions, we’ll get you on track.

Join me as we educate each other. Time is money, so let’s get started.

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” — Benjamin Franklin

Fin

The Nitty Gritty

  • PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) did a study on millennials and finance — bottom line is that we need to know more
  • Since studies show that financial literacy is not emphasized in the average household or community, let’s rally together to learn together
  • Becoming financially free is a journey that starts with education
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