One of the most important life skills a person can develop is financial savvy.
Along with being kind, independent and resourceful, knowing how to manage cash, savings and investments will go a long way toward success as an adult.
Teaching your kids to be financially independent and responsible doesn’t mean sitting them down at the kitchen table and having a long, serious talk. Instead, there are a lot of ways you can help your kids learn while you go through everyday situations. Here are a few ways to start:
Go grocery shopping. The grocery store is a great place to learn about budgeting, saving money and buying smart. Give your child (or teenager!) a budget and a list, and see how they do. Talk about paying attention to the “unit cost” sticker, talk about store brands and how they can save money, talk about coupons and store savings programs, too. You can also talk about needs versus wants!
Plan for the holidays. The holiday season is a great time to talk about money. It’s the season of the year when impulse buys are most likely, and when it’s critical to stick to a budget! Set a budget for holiday presents with your family, then start planning ahead for purchases by comparing prices and finding the best deals together — without ruining any surprises!
Save for a specific item! If your child has been asking for that new phone or the latest, greatest gaming system, have them work for it! No matter their age, they should be able to do some chores around the house, favors for neighbors, wash cars, mow lawns or something else to earn money they can save toward that desired item. Teaching them the value of working for something they want is a lesson they’ll definitely remember!
Go online. As a member of CommonWealth One, you have a variety of financial education resources at your fingertips! For our youngest members, this includes the Centsables® Youth Savings program, which includes savings incentives, youth educational resources and much more.
Do you have a child going to college this fall? This summer, be sure to fire up Banzai®, an online educational program that takes kids through topics like budgeting, investing, understanding credit cards and so much more. And, our It's a Money Thing® video series presents financial matters in a fun, accessible way, too.
Plus: Monitor and mentor them. When your child is old enough for their very own debit card, you — as a parent — will probably want to know what they’re doing with it! That’s why CommonWealth One offers a variety of monitoring tools through online and mobile banking. In addition, CommonWealth One’s MoneyTools can help your child create a budget and stick to it — and you can easily do account-to-account transfers if they need some emergency cash.
The key is to make sure your kids learn about financial education while they’re under your wing so they don’t have to learn things the hard way when they’re grown up. Give them a solid start by making money a topic you work into every day conversations.
People Helping People
CommonWealth One is here for you.