Imagining what my adult life might look like as a teenager, I predicted home ownership, marriage, children, no one telling me to eat vegetables – and all of this easily achieved by the ripe old age of 30.
While the reality has been a little different – not least because home ownership has dropped 18% since 2008 leaving nearly a million young people living with their parents – but also because it turns out I actually really like broccoli.
But, even in the current economic climate (forecasted to get worse post-Brexit), it seems teenagers today are still just as optimistic about their futures as those who saw only the fortunes of baby boomers ahead of them.
In particular, teens are expecting big things from their salaries, namely earning £70,000 by the age of 30.
[Read More: How to prepare teenagers for their first job]
Most people already in work will know that finding a job that pays £70k is no mean feat (data from HMRC shows that just over 5% of taxpayers earn this), but the 2,098 teenagers surveyed, aged 13 to 19, don’t seem deterred.
Not only do they expect this salary, they anticipate it happening quickly. The survey, from OneFamily, found teens hope to be earning it by the end of their twenties. Sadly for them, the facts show it’s unlikely: the Office for National Statistics says the average UK salary is currently £27,271 – £42,729 short of these teenage ambitions.
If they opted for a career in the ever growing technology field (such as video game developer, blogger, YouTube-er) this might come with a higher salary but, in fact, the most popular choices of jobs for these teenagers are still teacher and psychologist.
As a newly-qualified teacher in the UK, you’ll begin on a salary of at least £23,720, or £29,664 in inner London (the highest paying area), but this is likely to come after years spent accumulating debt, while studying and training.
In the survey, 43% said that money wouldn’t be their main motivation (yes, even with those dreams of £70K) and that they wanted to do something they cared about, working with a “nice team of people” and feeling fulfilled.
And as well as achieving in their career and financially, 41% anticipated finding the time to get married and start a family, too. Let’s hope their high-paying jobs don’t require them to stay late in the office.