Number Of Teens Expecting To Depend On Parents Into Adulthood Has Doubled Since 2011

(source: Junior Achievement)

(source: Junior Achievement)

In what could be an indicator of either a massive drop in teens’ financial prospects or the fact that teens today are getting more realistic about their financial futures, a new survey shows that the percentage of teenagers who expect to remain dependent on mom and/or dad until at least age 27 has doubled in just the last two years.

In 2011, only 12% of respondents to the Junior Achievement Teens and Personal Finance Survey said they would probably be financially dependent on a parent or guardian until the age of 27. According to the newly released 2013 survey [PDF], that rate now stands at 25%. Meanwhile, those who are completely unsure of when or if they will ever be dependent has jumped from 1% in 2011 to 11% in 2013.

Of course, these increases come with in a corresponding drop in the percentage of teens planning to have cut the parental purse strings by the time they hit 25. In 2011, 75% of teens said they would be supporting themselves at some point between 18 and 24. In just two years, that has decreased to 59%.

There has also been a shift over the last two years with regard to teens’ expectations for outperforming their parents financially. Two years, ago 36% said they believed they would ultimately be better off than the people who raised them, while 29% gazed into the crystal apps on their phones and saw a similar financial situation to their parents’.

Now, more than half (51%) of respondents only hope to do as well as their parent, while the number of those expecting to be better off than ma and pa remains at 38%.

Of course, a college education can be both a huge, long-term expense and an important factor in a young person’s long-term financial prospects. Kids today seem to know this, with 52% saying that students are borrowing too much for school and 64% claiming they have discussed paying for college with their parents. Yet only 9% of the surveyed teens are actively saving for a higher education.

And even though they are talking to their parents about paying for school, 48% say they have no idea how much, if any, will need to be borrowed so they can go to college.