Sharing hard-earned money lessons to build generational wealth
Julien and Kiersten Saunders, creators of the Rich & Regular blog, go so far as to call the “R word” “retirement”. Gaining that independence is crucial now, they say, not just after 65. And they encourage their audiences, which they reach on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, to look for out-of-the-box ways to do it.
“Minority communities are obsessed and focused on earning more income from their work,” said Mr Saunders, 41, who, along with his wife, started giving personal finance advice in 2017. “We steer them towards passive income that doesn’t require the middleman, permission or promotion. Passive income could come from the rental of goods or, for digital creators like them, sponsored content, he said.
Debt relief is a huge topic within the online personal finance community. Debt, including student loans, credit cards, and medical bills, disproportionately affects people of color in the United States. The typical debt level of Black and Hispanic Americans accounted for 46% of their assets in 2019, compared to 29% for whites. And about 21% of African-American borrowers were behind on their student loan payments, compared to 6% of white borrowers, according to a 2020 Aspen Institute study.
Léo Jean-Louis, says the Millennial Debt Freedom Coach on Instagram, advises his more than 50,000 subscribers to reduce their debt balances to zero by incorporating the lessons he and his wife, Faith, learned after paying off more than $ 200,000 in less than three years. An occupational therapist by training, he took weekend and vacation shifts, and the couple cut expenses by canceling cable, cooking meals, car pooling and more. He said the pandemic recession had sparked engagement and more questions from his supporters.
“I have also seen an increase in the share of other platforms willing to disseminate information,” said Jean-Louis. “Other Instagram influencers have been looking for collaborations.”
For influencers, the gender pay gap is a major issue. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, women generally earned about 18 percent less than their male counterparts in 2020, and the gap was much larger for black and Hispanic women. Black women in the professions earned only 68 percent of what their white male colleagues earned.