Monday, 15 June 2015

How To Teach Children About Money

There are so many life lessons that we as parents need to teach our children, so many in fact that it can be quite an overwhelming prospect.

From teaching the importance of kindness to others to the more mundane but oh-so-important skills such as cooking, ironing etc - our work really is cut out for us with all we have to teach these little people in order to send them out into the big wide world as capable adults - armed with all of the life skills they're likely to need.

One of the most important of lifes lessons is how to look after our finances.

This is something that my partner Jon has particularly strong feelings about.

Jon has never been too good with money and he blames that on the fact that it was something his parents never discussed with him. They never spoke to him about saving, about prioritising outgoings or about the importance of using current accounts and savings accounts to properly manage his earnings once he started working.

Because of this, Jon is particularly keen to instill a good knowledge of saving and spending wisely in his children.

We've agreed that once they reach the age of about 4 we will start giving them weekly pocket money - explaining to them how much they have, and discussing with them whether they wish to spend it at once or save it for something bigger.

Allowing them the opportunity as they get older to earn more money for themselves by carrying out certain chores for additional pocket money - in the hopes of teaching them that money doesn't come for free and needs to be earned, and that by saving and looking after it you can get so much more out of it.

When I lived at home my parents never charged my sister or I any "keep" - most of my friends had to pay their parents a certain amount of money towards food and board once they reached a certain age, but my parents always said they didn't want to do that and so they never did.

Whilst I appreciate that they didn't want to charge us anything to live there as they wanted us to be there and not be tempted to move out young, I think they did miss the point a little - by charging a small amount regularly you're preparing your children for the realities of life - once they fly the nest they will need to budget for rent or mortgage payments, bills and so on - and it's best to get used to this and learn how to budget whilst still in the safety of your home environment if at all possible, so this is something I fully intend to do once the boys start working and earning their own money.

How did you or will you teach your children about saving and handling money? I'd love to hear from you!

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