Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pay Attention, Parents. This One’s for You!

Who are our children’s first teachers? That’s right…parents. April is Financial Literacy Month, so I’m doing what I can to help kids understand and become comfortable with financial concepts. Here’s a list of things YOU can be doing to help teach the valuable skill of money management to your child.
Ten Tips for Teaching Kids about Money
  1. It’s never too early to start talking about money with your kids.
  2. Don’t make personal finance topics taboo from kids. Talking about money is a learning opportunity. Any discussion is better than silence.
  3. Consider giving your kids an allowance. Set expectations about spending, saving and giving to charity.
  4. Encourage your kids to make their own money. That way, they connect work to money. Money is a means to an end, not an end in itself.
  5. Teach your child to ask, “how can I earn that?”
  6. Make sure saving is a habit. Reinforce it. Don’t forget to do it yourself.
  7. Don’t say “we can’t afford it”, say “we don’t need that right now.”
  8. Keep talking about issues like debt and credit with teenagers, even if they act like they are not listening. Credit/debit cards can feel like plastic funny money.
  9. Kids remember and copy parents’ behavior. So model good stewardship of money no matter how much you have. Discuss the basics of budgeting.
  10. Think of a financial planner as a resource. Just ask. They can help you talk with your kids about money.