MIAMI (CBS4) – Monopoly money might be the only inheritance many baby boomers ever see. Chalk it up to changing expectations of how to spend the golden years. Sam Tosone’s still travelling.
“I took a cruise a couple of months ago, which is kind of child like for two 82-year-old men. There is a lot of fun to be had I guess,” he said.
A recent survey found that only 14% of baby boomer’s parents feel they owe their kids an inheritance. That’s down from 22% in 2005.
“We didn’t save the money for our children, we saved it to make sure we had enough until we leave this earth,” explained Ed Clarke.
The economy’s another complication. Many portfolios were devastated during the Great Recession and may never have time to catch up.
From 2000 to 2010, middle class families lost 28% of their wealth.
Jack and Mary Daniels are an example of the “new normal.”
“Life expectancy for someone like me is longer and I will be lucky if I made the right financial decisions for me to be able to live my life to the end the way I want,” said Mary.
“Grannies are not being greedy,” according to Emil Ronchi, a financial planner who believes the difficult start many young people have today is another factor. “Instead of waiting until they are 45 and getting the inheritance, they are getting it now when they are 25 and 35.”
The wealthy get one set of habits, and everyone has another set of habits the expectations for an inheritance in the middle class is going to keep getting lower and lower and lower.
Some economists worry that could trigger a ripple effect in the overall economy. Many inheritances are used for big-ticket purchases like vacation homes, tuitions, and cars. And if that spending is cut back…. it could continue to slow down the national recovery, instead of potentially boosting it even stronger.