How to Teach Your Children to Save Money (Part 2)

If you missed last week’s post about How to Teach Your Children to Save, it focuses on saving ideas for younger children. As your children grow, here are a few more ideas to teach them about saving.

1. Help Your Child Prioritize
Have an older child write out a list of things he or she wants and prioritize that list. This includes long-term items such as laptop for college, a graduation trip, or even the down payment for a house someday. Have your child allocate an amount of their income to each goal. These are the beginnings of a financial plan and this type of thinking will help your child in the long run.

2. Allow Your Child Make Mistakes
Sometimes the best lesson comes from a poor decision, especially when your child is young and the financial loss won’t be so great. For instance, there may be a time when your child takes her money and spends it all on one item only to realize she doesn’t have enough money for something else she wants or needs. After doing this, she will begin to learn that she needs to think first before she spends. 

3. Play Games
There are a number of games available to teach financial concepts to children. Monopoly and The Game of Life, for example, can teach money management skills as well as the importance of planning ahead. 

4. Talk About Money
While you may not want to discuss your salary in front of your children, you may want to let them hear you discuss your financial plan and the arrangements you’re making for retirement. This could simply be having a conversation with your spouse while your children are in the room. Hearing this allows your children to understand that saving is a lifelong endeavor.

5. Look for Good Deals with Your Children
One of the keys to saving money is looking for deals on purchases. If you find an item at the store, suggest looking online to compare prices first before buying it. This can be an enjoyable game to see if they can find it for less expensive. It will also teach them to think before buying and not to buy something impulsively.

6. Point Out the Positive
Praise your children for any amount of money they save. And continue to encourage your child to keep saving even if he or she is wasteful with money.

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