Strong Family Ties Are Central to Their Economic Prosperity

The baby boomers changed many cultural traditions during the last 40 years, one worthy change of note: divorce. There is no one societal factor that has impacted the economy of the family more than divorce. In contrast, the Hispanic community is extraordinarily family-centric. This singular cultural component, if sustained, will have significant economic impact for the Hispanic community in the future.

Most immigrant families are closely knit together with a bond that has been forged through several generations. One of the curious aspects of family-centric thinking here is the family compound. Purchasing a large plot of land and building homes on it for the extended family creates a neighborhood of their own.

For the majority of Latinos families, their daughters remain at home until they’re married; this includes returning college graduates as well. Watch the interview featuring the culture of family first with popular bi-lingual speaker and financial consultant Karina Gutierrez.

Another remarkable characteristic of Latino families is the care of their elderly. It’s rare to have a senior family member placed into a retirement home. Often, additional rooms are built to accommodate grandparents and outside help is brought in for assisted living at home. The expenses of caring for an elderly parent will often fall to the adult children. A possible downside to this can impact their ability to save for their own retirement, or for the education of their children. But this is still the way the Latino family will handle the situation of an elderly parent who needs care. With the exception of assisted home living, traditional long-term care insurance is not a desirable type of insurance.

Financial consultant Karina Gutierrez explains the matriarch role in the family. “In many ways, the Latino culture is still in transition. For a Latina mother, her children will always be first. She sees her role as staying home to raise the children. If she had a career before, it will be put on hold once she starts a family. So even the idea of returning to work after the children are of school age is a new concept. And if they have to go back to work, there is a guilt factor to be considered, because they do not like to be away from their children. It has not been the traditional way.”

Religion is very important to the Hispanic community. Most Hispanics are Roman Catholics and dedicated givers to their church. They still have affection for their former countries of origin, but America is now their home. So the flag, family and religion make up the heart of the Hispanic people.

Syndicated financial columnist and talk show host Steve Savant interviews popular bi-lingual and financial consultant Karina Gutierrez on Hispanic Culture and Money.

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