Parenting Advice: Teach Kids Money

When is the best time to start teaching your child the value of money and when to get them to start saving. Ideas about preparing your children for spending.

When you start hearing from your child 'Buy me this' and 'Buy me that,' is that the time to start talking to them about money? Before they started talking they didn't ask you for anything, and you bought them what they needed. Now that they are talking and asking for things, you need to realize they are starting to have wants and needs of their own. We all want to give our children the best, but is there a line on what they should ask for and get?

When your child starts asking you for things, whether you are out together or at home, it's time to start talking to them about money. Before that, they accepted whatever you gave them and didn't ask for more. At that time they weren't ready to understand the concept of money. They had no personal wants of their own, big or small. Now that they have some personal wants, whether it's a toy, a burger, new clothes or wanting you to take them somewhere that money is needed, it's time to start talking to them about money. The first thing you need to discuss with them is that things are not for free, that when you buy them something, or take them to a paying place, you have to pay for it and it takes money to do that.

This is when you explain to them that you the parent go to work to make money, so you can take care of them and give them some of the pleasures in life. Every toy, article of clothing, burger or movie they go to, you have to pay for it with the money you have earned. This is when you should start teaching them the value of money, that along with fun things and the nice things they have, money also has to take care of them by providing where they sleep, the food they eat and some of the things that keep a household functioning. A child younger than the age of six is probably not going to comprehend this, so it's better to wait until your child is six or older to start teaching them about money. At the age of six they are more

independent and in school, so they will start wanting more things than a younger child. Their life is at a point where it is changing anyway: from school, friends to a different daily environment that they're in.

Once you have taken the time to talk to your child about money and let them know money is needed to do some of the things they want to do, let them know it's not everything.

Now is the time to teach them how you have to give in order to receive and how they should start preparing themselves to have money by saving for the things that they might want in the future. By the time your child is seven or eight you should start giving them an allowance for doing things, which is a way to earn money.

Working to earn money is a value they need to start learning at that age. Open up a savings account for them to start teaching them after working for the money, they need to learn how to set some money aside for the future and then enjoy what they have made. When you start off teaching your child when they are younger about the value of money and how to save it, it will make them financially wiser when they become an adult.

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