Monday, April 2, 2018

Why Teaching Kids about Money Is Important

Trevon and I have always felt like it's important to teach our kids about money and using money wisely. Summer is coming, we are starting to feel it warm up outside. Soon we will see apricots on our tree and vegetables in our garden and that gives us many more opportunities to teach the girls (and eventually V) about earning money, saving money and spending money.  So it's time to go over things with them again.

Starting at an early age is key to helping your kids learn this life skill. Did you know that by age 7 kids have most of their money habits set? This is not something I knew until just recently and it surprised me a little. J will be 7 this year and it made me think, have we taught her enough about saving money?  I'll be honest, J is really good at saving money. I think she's maybe spent a dollar of money that she's ever gotten in her life, but does she know why she needs to save money? 

Teaching kids these things start early and it's important because these skills help shape their lives.  I was really lucky to have a family who taught good money habits. I can't say that my parents ever sat me down and talked to me about saving money all the time, but they taught me through example.  My mom was really good at sitting down and balancing a checkbook. She took me shopping with her all the time so I would know where the money was going. My dad worked hard and did his best to save money.  I never knew how much my dad made, honestly, I still don't know how much he makes. But that didn't matter. I saw him working hard and I knew that's how we were getting the money that we needed. I knew the work that it took to earn what we had. Even though we did well growing up, my parents saved money when we could. We shopped sales, we got hand-me-downs, we learned to work for what we wanted. We never had an allowance, my mom gave us jobs around the house to earn a small amount of money so we would learn a good work ethic.

I'm hoping that I am passing some of those habits down to my kids so that they can learn how to work hard and be smart with the money they have. I want them to have good adult lives with the financial security that they will undoubtedly need.  It doesn't have to be as daunting to teach this to kids as it sounds.  Here are a few things you can use to get them started.

- Give them a glass jar, like a mason jar, to put their money in.  This is a great tip because they can see their money adding up and they can see it disappear when they use it.

- Set a good example. Even if you talk to kids about money, nothing you say will matter if you don't show them that you do that too.  The most powerful kind of lesson is the lesson you teach by example.

-  Take them to the store with you. I know how appealing it is to go to the store alone (and we all deserve that once in a while), but when you take your kids to the store it shows them that things cost money. Things don't just show up for free.

- Make them work for their money. I am a big believer in having kids work for their money instead of just giving it to them as an allowance. Having them work for it teaches them that money isn't something that just happens. It will teach them how to earn money and it will teach them a good work ethic. It will also make them appreciate their money and the things that they can earn with that money more. They won't just be things, they will be things that they worked hard for.

- When they get enough money saved up, set them up their own bank account. They won't need a debit card or a checkbook. If they want to get money out you can take them to the bank to take money out. Setting up a savings account in the bank teaches them a whole bunch of stuff about savings and interest etc. These are things they will use all of their life.

Giving your kids a strong foundation for being money smart is an important thing in life. It's something they will always have to use.  It's never too early to start teaching them so they can learn all that they need to learn and get into good saving habits.

Did you have an allowance growing up?

Parents reading: how do you teach your kids about money?

What was the first job you had?
 I had a job folding towels for my dad's work (he's a dentist) and I made a nickel/towel.

No comments:

Post a Comment