Are You in Better Physical or Financial Shape? [AUDIO]
A lot of New Jersey residents are more worried about their financial health than they are about their physical health, and they're more likely to have gone away for vacation in the past year than they were to review their finances. These are just a few of the findings in the new Wells Fargo Financial Health Survey.
"About 60 percent of the people in the state of New Jersey feel good or great about their physical condition and less than half (47 percent) of the adults that we surveyed told us that their overall financial health was good or great," said John Garone, regional director for wealth management with Wells Fargo. "That was really surprising to us."
If you're uncomfortable talking about your personal finances, you are not alone. According to the survey, Garden State residents find discussing personal finances with others as difficult (45 percent) as talking about sex (45 percent), and tougher than discussing politics (38 percent) or religion (37 percent).
"Thirty-three percent of New Jerseyans currently feel their financial health is a bigger concern than their physical health," Garone said. "About the same number (34 percent) say money issues are their biggest source of stress."
Most New Jersey adults lack any type of formal financial plan. Overall, 52 percent report having no type of detailed investment or financial plan, or even a budget to help manage their spending.
"More than half the people across this state do not have a financial plan," Garone said. "Think about that. That leads to the stresses that people have."
A majority of residents statewide (56 percent) report that by living within their means they do not need to worry about money, but far fewer feel in "good/great" financial shape to be able to retire comfortably (40 percent) or having enough "rainy day" savings set aside for emergencies (42 percent).
"Less than half (45 percent) of New Jerseyans conducted an annual financial review or checkup over the past year, and yet nearly 80 percent of us were able to see our way through to take a vacation," Garone said.