Teach Your Children About Money

Teach Your Children About Money

I firmly believe that if​ we'd been taught more about investing and basic money management in​ high school (and younger!) my generation wouldn't have some of​ the​ financial troubles that they do. I was lucky enough to​ have parents who taught me those lessons at​ home,​ but many of​ my friends weren't so lucky. I don't think much has changed for our own children. the​ schools just don't have the​ time or​ resources to​ focus on​ basic money skills so it's up to​ us as​ parents to​ educate our children.
We have to​ teach by example. if​ our children see us spending money on​ credit cards they think that the​ little plastic card is​ all you need to​ get your heart’s desire. we​ need to​ show them that the​ little plastic card produces a​ bill each month that must be paid. Pay it​ in​ full so they can learn the​ habit early.

Some people are hesitant (or refuse) to​ involve their children in​ their financial affairs. Up to​ a​ certain age I would agree. But at​ some point you need to​ involve your children at​ least a​ little bit so they can learn the​ process of​ money management and it​ will help keep you accountable for your actions. Having to​ explain your frivolous purchases to​ your children can quickly alter your own habits.

Your ultimate goal is​ for your children to​ be better off than you are. if​ you don’t teach them about how to​ manage money they could easily become worse off in​ their adult years. Don’t burden them with ignorance. if​ you don’t feel qualified to​ show them proper money handling skills then enlist the​ help of​ qualified professionals or​ family members who are skilled with money. the​ goal is​ not perfection. It’s basic education and hopefully preventing the​ already catastrophic credit card debt from spilling over into the​ next generation.

My favorite example of​ teaching money management within the​ home was setup by the​ Dilley family. They had sextuplets several years ago and learned a​ way to​ teach their children good behavior and money management at​ the​ same time. the​ kids earn Dilley Dollars for doing their chores and good behavior. the​ dollars are redeemable for video game time or​ can be converted to​ real money (50 cents real money for every Dilley Dollar) which can spent on​ real things. the​ kids are taught to​ save some of​ it​ and they learn to​ appreciate what it​ takes to​ make money in​ this world.

Whatever system you come up with,​ stick with it. Make your children accountable for their own spending habits and be accountable to​ them for your decisions. Admit your mistakes and do your best to​ lead them down the​ right financial path. Stick with the​ consequences of​ poor judgment. of​ course you are the​ parent and make the​ final decisions,​ but the​ more you can involve them in​ the​ money processes of​ your household the​ better off they’ll be when they step into the​ real world on​ their own.

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