Kids are very impressionable and parents have a great responsibility in showing them the correct way to do things in life. There is one problem however, and that can be sometimes we don’t know they are looking up to us on certain aspects of our daily lives.
Scientific studies show that kids as young as seven years old have already formed money habits, so it is never too early to begin setting an example. Today we are going to cover some of the money habits you should be aware of that may be teaching your kids bad ideologies.
This is the typical scenario when you reach the counter in a store, your kid pesters and begs for a novelty toy of some sort and you buy it for them to keep them quiet. This can negatively affect your children by devaluing the reason for saving and earning money.
Breaking the habit: Develop a thick skin and develop it fast because although a few tantrums will be expected, do not give in to every toy they want. Instead teach them about the value of money and how to earn it and save towards that toy they want.
Money for Nothing
Pocket money is a time-tested method to controlling even the most unruly kids, but simply giving them money every month for nothing in return can sometimes confuse how they value it. The entire purpose of pocket money should be to motivate kids to complete chores and understand that money is earned in life and not gifted.
Break the habit: The most effective methods I have seen in my time are chart systems that teach kids the value of work whilst still helping them manage how and when they complete their work. If there are more difficult jobs then it can be a great way to show why some work is more valuable compared to others and this also puts the kids in charge of how much they want earn.
How many times have you seen an image online of a little boy or girl holding a mobile phone and a credit card? It’s images like these which tell us kids look up to us more than we think and when your child sees you using your credit card to buy everything, they may treat credit as a means of payment when they grow up. The equivalent of a credit card to kids is mum and dad buying whatever they want whenever they want, even though they have spent all their monthly pocket money.
Break the habit: Before you go shopping with the kids, take some time out to educate them about the entire process. A great way to start would be to take the kids to an ATM, show them that you are withdrawing the amount of money from your debit card that you want to spend during this trip and that the money is coming from your bank account where you get paid and that it’s not simply a hole in the wall that gives free money.
You may withhold from discussing money in front of the kids and this can be appropriate when the budget is tight, but, never talking about money in front of them can cause them to think money is a big secret. If a child feels that money is a secretive subject they may shy away from asking for help in the future, when really only a little money could have helped resolve their issue.
Break the habit: The next time your kid bangs on about the latest smartphone or other trendy product, don’t simply brush them off, instead sit down and explain to them why you can’t afford to buy it with this months available budget. It is also incredibly valuable to tell them why money that what you earn is going towards other costs rather than to the item they want. You never know, your kids may appreciate being talked to like an adult.
I hope you have found these money habits useful and we would greatly appreciate any further advice you could offer to our community by sing the comments section below.