Money management skills are vital to success in life. The best time to cultivate these skills is during childhood and adolescence, but (unremarkably so) public schools are virtually void of personal finance classes. This means that it is up to parents and guardians to instill this knowledge in future generations.
As your CPA in Hawaii, we suggest you take charge of your child’s knowledge by making continued efforts that support the principles of money management. To start, think of ways you can demonstrate and allow your little savers to experience:
- Waiting for things they want
- Making decisions on what they can have
- Saving for the things they want
- Spending based on the funds they have
Learning to wait for what we want and how to choose what is most important are the foundation of savings. The child who learns these lessons early, perhaps picking out a toy and saving for it, is better equipped to handle more difficult financial decisions in the future.
Piggy banks are a classic tool for teaching money management. Today, these tools have plugs in the bottom, so you don’t have to break them to get money out. That sounds like a lesson credit card companies want kids to learn—just taking it when you want it.
Don’t let your children lose sight of what is most important. Instead of one, set up two banks. Label the first savings and the second one spending. When your little financier or adolescent investor earns income, help them divide it into the two banks. Then, let them manage both, making decisions, learning to wait, and effectively manage their hard money.