It’s important to start teaching kids about money at an early age. Most of the time kids don’t understand the value of a dollar unless someone teaches them. It’s part of your parenting responsabilities to teach them how to save money. There are lots of ways you can get your kids to start saving money.
Few suggestions on how to save money for your kids
Give them a salary instead of an allowance.
Your kids can’t save what they don’t have. If you have it in your budget, give the kids some of their own money. Most people would call this an allowance. I’d say call it a salary. If you call it an allowance your kids will start thinking that they are entitled to money. If you call it a salary, they will understand that you have to work for money.
Make the salary be connected to behavior, grades or doing a chore. Assign chores and behaviors dollar values. If they complete a certain chore or do a certain positive behavior they will get the salary that matches that chore or behavior. Conversely if they don’t do the chore or they do a negative behavior (like throwing a temper tantrum in the middle of Target) then they don’t get a salary. If you really want to get creative, you could even charge a fine if they don’t do what they are supposed to do. When they see the money in their piggy bank grow or shrink according to what they do, that sends a powerful message. That will teach them how to save money.
Allow the kids to have some input in spending decisions.
No I’m not saying that the kids get to pick where you put your retirement money. However, you could allow the kids to pick certain household items to buy. If their choice results in you saving money, you could give them a percentage of what you save. Not only are you teaching your children to save money, but you are also encouraging them to be smart shoppers.
Make the kids pay money for extra expenses they cause.
Don’t you hate it when your kids leave all of the lights on in the house? Do you have kids that will use ten paper towels to dry one dish? Have them pay for those things. Charge a quarter for every time the light is left on in a room they are in. Make them contribute to all of those school field trips they want to go on. Are they always running up the cell phone bill? Have them contribute to that too. I know I sound like a broken record, but kids won’t understand money until they can see it working or not working. When they see the money disappear from their piggy bank because they had to have the latest fad or trend they will learn to prioritize better.
You can teach kids how to save money. It is a process and you have to stick with it, even when you want to give in to whatever they are asking for. In the end it will make them be more responsible adults. And you: what are your techniques to help raise a smart shopper? What are your tips to teach your child key money concepts?