Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sandwich Generation Stretched Thin Financially

/PRNewswire/ -- Today, Generation Mortgage Company and Zogby International released alarming new data detailing the financial tribulations of the Sandwich Generation -- a sector largely comprised of Baby Boomers who are caring for their aging parents while supporting their own children. The study found that a majority of the Sandwich Generation give their household's current financial situation a negative rating and are having to make tough financial decisions and cutbacks.

The eye-opening results shed light on many financial hardships facing the Sandwich Generation. With unemployment near 10 percent, it is no surprise that 23 percent of those polled have lost a job recently and an additional 24 percent have taken a cut in pay or benefits. This has resulted in 17 percent failing to make a mortgage or rent payment on time due to insufficient funds.

According to the Generation Mortgage/Zogby International survey, finances have forced the Sandwich Generation to make serious cuts in their spending habits to survive during the recession. Seventy-three percent have decreased spending on entertainment, recreation or eating out. Moreover, 43 percent have decreased overall spending on food or groceries and three out of five of those polled say it is difficult to be a caregiver for their parents and/or in laws while financially supporting their children.

"The Sandwich Generation is probably the most financially vulnerable demographic to result from the recession," said Jeff Lewis, Chairman, Generation Mortgage Company. "They are unemployed or under-employed, financially supporting two generations in their family and are saddled with debt from bills and a mortgage. As this group looks to retire, their financial situation, coupled with the state of the economy, is not leaving them with many options."

The study also uncovered that 78 percent of those polled said they are worried about having enough money to retire comfortably and 23 percent have restructured their retirement plan in the last year due to financial reasons. Even more distressing, 52 percent responded that they plan to work part time during retirement to make ends meet.

"As the Sandwich Generation looks towards retirement," commented Lewis, "they should become educated on their available financial options. One of the financial options that is often overlooked is a reverse mortgage."

Zogby International was commissioned by Generation Mortgage to conduct an online survey of 271 adults who have children and are caregivers of parent(s). The survey was conducted from August 9-11, 2010. A sampling of Zogby International's online panel, which is representative of the adult population of the U.S., was invited to participate. Slight weights were added to region, age, race, gender, and education to more accurately reflect the population. The Margin of Error (MOE) is +/- 6.1 percentage points. Margins of Error are higher in sub-groups. The MOE calculation is for sampling error only.

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