Preparing kids to become financially responsible adults is a truly difficult job, especially since as adults we also have our own sorting out to do. But difficult does not mean impossible. It just means that we need to spend a little more time thinking about it. It also means that we need to invest a little more effort to really get them to where we want them to be.
To help you with this task, we present two very important things about money that kids must learn. These things are so common that many parents make the mistake of taking them for granted. But the truth of the matter is, these pieces of knowledge need some serious instilling and nurturing.
Saving should be directed and consistent
Many kids are introduced to saving quite early. Many of them already have piggy banks and other coin storage items lying around in their bedrooms. Oftentimes, parents get delighted when they see the little ones dropping a coin or two in them each day.
While this is really good, it is not enough. The kids must understand that saving should be directed and consistent. This means that they should be able make stable projections as to how much they can save in a certain period.
So that they can do that, they must first learn how to budget the money given to them. They should also acknowledge that the amount for savings should always be a fixed percentage of the whole money pie.
You think doing that is so simple? Think again. Even adults have problems saving a consistent amount because of the many distractions around them. What usually happens is that they just save what’s left of their funds after all the expenses – both necessary and not at all – have been deducted from it.
Hence, the bottom line here is disciplined spending. And this sure needs some serious monitoring.
Loans or debts are not always bad
Many traditional parents advise their kids to steer clear of debt all the time. They say that debt will just put people under immense stress and pressure; that experience, of course, is pretty undesirable.
While that can be true especially when debt goes unchecked, it is still wrong to generalize such a mindset to all. You see, loans allow individuals to enjoy things that they can’t afford now, but they can anyway given that their income is steady. You should make efforts to make the kids see this point clearly.
Of course, like anything that involves money, loans can be prone to abuse; this abuse is actually what gives loans the bad reputation that they have. Many of the abusers are those who treat the loaned amount as an extension of their income, not as the cash advance that it really is.
Instill in the little ones that loans are there to beat time, not to break income ceilings. If these things are still not clear at this point, or you have difficulty translating finance concepts to more understandable language, maybe a useful car title loan glossary can help.
Money is a very useful but very sensitive commodity of the modern world. Teaching money matters to kids might sound like overkill for some, but you have to realize that it’s absolutely necessary. In fact, it’s the least that we as parents can do to prepare them for what lies ahead.