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To do: Teach my child how to be financially literate.
– Every parent ever.
Teaching our children how to manage and utilize money is one of the most important things we will do as parents. After all, it is our responsibility to set them up for a life of success, and independence. We care for our children, and want them to live to their fullest potential, and not just crash on our couches till they are 40, can I hear an amen?
So how does one do this? Well, there are 2 simple ways to teach our children. The first is by establishing boundaries with money. And the second is, emulating good money management skills and implementing them in YOUR life too. Monkey see monkey do!
When we talk about “money boundaries”, it sounds constrictive at first interpretation. But what we really mean is for you to give your youth their own independent confidence when handling money by increasing their financial responsibility. As we stated previously, the second way to teach your young children about money is to live within your own “money boundaries” as well. Here Buck Academy is going to walk you through the steps on how not only to raise a responsible, independent money wise adult, and also, how to be one.
First things first, establish what your money boundary is.
In the words of somebody famous on the subject,
“Children raised with good boundaries learn that they are not only responsible for their lives, but also free to live their lives any way they choose, as long as they take responsibility for their choices. For the responsible adult, the sky’s the limit.”― Henry Cloud, Boundaries with Kids: When to Say Yes, How to Say No.
We can search on Google all day on topics of boundaries with our youth, but how often can we find an article that touches on a subject as hard as finances? Many parents, grandparents, and guardians are unsure of where their responsibility ends, and where the responsibility of their youth begins.
Secondly, why are money boundaries important?
This applies to not only your youth but you as well. Why is having a money boundary so important? We are glad you asked. When our children are small, they instinctively depend on us to care for them. From the dinner table to buying their school clothes, they know that they can depend on us to care for them. But our babies don’t stay babies forever, and it’s important that we start to establish as they age money boundaries. Weighing out the “wants” vs “needs” and knowingly make decisions on what those are.
For example, your teen wants a new pair of Nikes that cost $130. You are willing to buy Nikes at a lower cost of $80. Insert, “want” vs “need”, does your youth NEED the $130 shoes? Or do they WANT the more expensive pair? In this scenario, who would pay for the shoes? Would you A) Pay for the shoes, B) Have your child pay for the shoes, or C) Have your youth cover the difference in cost?
Third, what do money boundaries accomplish?
Money boundaries help establish a routine and a strategy on how to manage your money. But they do so much more than that. Maintaining a strong understanding of your money boundary implements not only in your life but the life of your children:
- Setting up clear financial responsibilities and expectations for you and your youth.
- Develop planned spending decisions.
- Gives your youth an opportunity to understand what you are and aren’t going to pay for.
- Slowly passes off the monetary baton to your child over time.
- Creates ownership and responsibility.
And lastly, how you can be a solid financial role model for your youth.
Being a good role model for your youth is vital, inside and outside of the house. Showing your youth boundaries shows a love deeper than any parent, grandparent, or caregiver could express. We are preparing our youth for the days of tomorrow after all. Not only does creating these financial boundaries help our youth, but they also help us learn too. We live by example for our youth to look to us as to how they should manage their lives and personal finances. Below are 4 ways you can lead by example.
- Save what you can, when you can.
Any money that comes into your hands, save some off the top. Whether it’s a birthday card from gran, a new job promotion, or an unexpected gift, put some in your savings before you spend a penny!
- Have a money meeting
Have a money meeting with your family on a regular basis. Sit down and talk about a household budget. Create a graph of where money needs to go first, and what is leftover talk about what you all as a family unit would like to do with what is left.
- Create a family savings goal
Time to ditch the routine and create a family savings goal. What would you all like to save for? This is a great time to get creative with your children.
- Make money management a common topic for discussion
Did you know that over 70% of parents don’t like to discuss finances with their children? Our goal is to raise adults who aren’t scared of managing their personal finances.
If you want to raise a financially independent and responsible child, the one thing all of these points have in common is that they all start with YOU. Lead by example, and take the time to learn from your children too. They contain the ability to teach us about our own personal finances, and the decisions we make. For more financial advice, knowledge, and education, be sure to check out our other blogs!