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Teach Smart Saving and Spending

September 21, 2015 • General News

Teaching basic money management skills to children is critical. Helping your children learn how to become regular savers and responsible borrowers now will help them be prepared for when they are on their own.

feddys corner ty

Jessica with her son, Ty. Member since 2014.

Younger than age 5

  • Use coin banks to help children learn how to identify coins and count money

  • Introduce the concept of money by giving children small change to spend occasionally when you go to the store. Limit options to save time and reduce conflict

Ages 5 to 10

  • Give a weekly allowance to offer hands-on experience. Because children know they'll regularly get a set amount of money, this makes it easier to learn how to save

  • Let children save for, and buy, something they really want. Rewards reinforce young children's saving habits, so tie saving to spending

  • Use our moonjars that have a "Save," "Spend" and "Share" section. Suggest that children contribute a portion of their allowance and cash gifts to each to teach how to spend wisely, save regularly and give to others

  • When the "save" portion builds up, take children to the credit union to open a savings account

  • Provide opportunities to earn extra money by doing jobs not included in regular responsibilities

Ages 11 to 14

  • Include children on shopping trips to teach them what things cost and smart shopping techniques. Let them help compare product qualities, prices, return policies and warranties

  • Encourage odd jobs: babysitting, yard work or pet care

  • Encourage children to use their own money to buy beyond-the-basics clothing and accessories

Ages 15 and older

  • Discuss saving plans for long-term goals, such as education and cars

  • Consider giving teens a seasonal clothing allowance, beyond their regular allowance. After setting guidelines and limits, let them make their own choices

  • Consider helping financially responsible teens open a share draft/checking account

  • Consider encouraging financially responsible older teens to use a debit card with their share draft/checking accounts

Information provided by CUNA

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