April 21-27 is Credit Union Youth Week, a time to think about how to prepare our youngest members to be financially savvy.
By teaching kids how to save for their goals, they’ll have one of the most difficult aspects of saving under their belt by the time they’re teens—being a consistent saver.
Here are just a few clues to help teach kids of different ages about being a savings sleuth:
* Have young children—preschool age—sort different types of money into piles by color and size.
* Play grocery store or credit union/bank. Help them use a pretend cash register.
* At the grocery store, let kids of all ages help you shop. Teach them how to comparison shop—for example, show them that for every $4.85 box of cereal, there may be similar brands on sale for half as much.
* As kids get older, let them know what things cost. Share sales receipts and bills that you receive for items or services you’ve purchased for them.
* If you decide to pay your kids an allowance, include them in the decision. Discuss allowance amounts and what they should use their allowance for. The amount is your call, but allow them input. One idea is to have children set aside part of their allowance for spending, part for saving, and part for sharing. Clarify what you’ll pay for and what they should be responsible for. For example, when you’re at the movies, maybe you agree to pay for the movie ticket, but the Milk Duds are on them.
* As kids reach high-school age, clarify what you will pay for and what your children are responsible for. For example, your kids may want the newest cell phone that comes with a really high price tag. Establish your spending limit. If they still want the more expensive version, have them make up the difference. Often, once the responsibility of paying for items is on kids, the “latest and greatest” aren’t so important.
Get your kids started right financially. Bring them in to Bethex FCU-we have more ideas to help you raise financially savvy kids.
Copyright 2013 Credit Union National Association Inc. Information subject to change without notice. For use with members of a single credit union. All other rights reserved.