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Tune on, tune in and switch off

June 28, 2008

finance

Normally I’m very happy to take responsibility for my own actions and assign this standard to the rest of the world. I have been very critical of my twenty-something contemporaries who have squandered their time at university not to mention the sheer speed at which they have burnt through their student loans and commercial credit options. (Though I’m no financial angel myself!)

But following separate conversations with my (divorced) parents, I began to wonder whether the financial problems which my generation face are a direct result of the behaviour of my parents’ generation.

I have no issues with my own parents: they are both semi-retired teachers and do not have the funds to support my brother and I onto the property ladder. Usually this doesn’t bother me, but a number of my friends have recently got married and their parents have remortgaged their property in order to help their offspring get into property. A female friend of mine has been given significant help in her start to life. Her father works in air traffic control and has helped her get a very comfortable wage in the industry and both parents have stumped up £30,000 for her and fiancé as a deposit for their new home. I wouldn’t want my parents to do this; the divorce has stretched them quite enough already. But it doesn’t stop me getting frustrated at this distortion in society, as some parents support the ridiculous high property prices by remortgaging their houses to help their children borrow huge mortgages.

This isn’t helping!

There are parents who did nothing to help their children understand the value of money, or work, failing to educate their son or daughter on how to make do with “just enough”. The same parents are then suddenly surprised when their child returns from university with £20,000 of debt. It doesn’t help that university is now less about education and more about intoxication, as students spend more time thinking about cheap nights down at the SU, alongside what to wear and who they’re doing to pull.

If this sounds cynical, it’s because I am (!) …. very. Six years at university is sufficient to turn anyone’s rose tinted glasses of an intellectual investment into a darker vision of higher education. The sheer volume of students today makes it difficult to decipher the deft from the daft and the gifted from the drifted.

But enough about students – I might appear obsessed.

Parents – just stop bailing your children out! You’re not helping!

If nobody bought the expensive houses, then nobody could sell the expensive houses

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