14 Jun 2024Read of the weekYoung Women Aspire To DINK Lifestyles

Financial insecurity is prompting many to rethink traditional markers of success. For a growing number of young women, conventional milestones like marriage, homeownership, and childbirth are taking a backseat. Instead, they are prioritising combining incomes and are opting to live child-free.

J’Nae PhillipsJ'Nae Phillips is a Senior Insights Editor at Canvas8. After an early career working in fashion and media, her passion for culture and journalism grew and she made the transition to writing and editing full-time. She specialises in fashion, trends, cultural shifts and all of the good stuff that gets people talking.

According to research from Credit Karma, many Gen Zers and Yers are aiming to be ‘DINKs,’ or ‘dual-income-no-kids.’ They are prioritising their careers and finances, with 45% of Gen Y women and 41% of Gen Z women expressing disinterest in conventional timelines for settling down. "The past few decades have shown that societal norms have evolved, with millennial women playing a major role in that shift,” said Courtney Alev, consumer financial advocate at Intuit Credit Karma. “As a result, many women today aren't bound by the timelines of previous generations, choosing instead to prioritize their careers over early motherhood."

The economic impact of Gen Y women will become increasingly significant in the coming years, as many face the choice between careers and families. Of the Gen Y women surveyed by Credit Karma who did not want children, 40% cited financial constraints as the reason. Economic challenges in the early 2020s have led debt-laden Gen Yers to accrue more loans, with little indication that raising children will become more affordable for a generation that has already postponed starting families.

While economic concerns have prolonged the youth of many in the Gen Y cohort, the anticipated wealth transfer from Boomers to Gen Y may alter the financial landscape for this struggling generation. And as a growing number of people worldwide choose not to have children, brands like Happy & Childless are providing a space for adults without kids to connect.