It’s never too early to teach kids lessons about money. From the time our kids were just toddlers, they’ve been learning about finances. Just because kids are small, does not mean they can’t learn to be good stewards of money. Here are some money lessons kids need to learn from parents while they are young.
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Money Lessons Kids Need to Learn from Parents
I can remember when our kids would ask if we could stop by the “toy store” on our way home from storytime at the library. They didn’t mean going to the big box store, they wanted to know if we could stop at the local thrift store and dig through the box of odds and ends looking for a new Little People character or Weebles figure. They knew that we would be able to find a great toy for a great price!
Good Price: Good Product
It’s only a good deal if it’s a good price and a good product. We used to go to lots of yard sales when the kids were young. They knew that we wouldn’t buy anything unless it was a good price and a good product. Just because something was cheap, did not make it a good deal. We helped them evaluate a toy to see if it was a good product worth spending the money.
Not every deal is for you
One of the most important lessons they learn from us, is that not every deal is right. Since I often use coupons, the kids will see me evaluate the product and the savings. Just because it might save a certain amount of money, if it doesn’t fit with my plan, then the deal is not right. As one friend once told me, even if you save 20% on a purchase, you still have to pay the rest of the amount. Not all savings opportunities are the best deal.
No pay; no play
We try hard to operate our household on a pay as we go status. Before we buy furniture, new electronics or products for our house, we check to see if we can afford it. Have a Budget; Stick to It! Know where your money is going each month and then see if a purchase fits into the big picture.
No buying with anticipated money
The kids never get an advance on their allowance. If the money is not currently in your pocket, then it is not included in your bank. It is not a wise financial decision to buy something today using the money you think is coming in tomorrow.
Win Some; Lose Some
I sometimes have a hard time with this concept. When a coupon doesn’t come off at the register, it’s hard to walk away and swallow the lost savings. But I’ve found that sometimes you save money, and sometimes you don’t. It’s never worth losing your cool over a coupon or deal. It’s important to pick your battles. Is it really worth it to you to get upset over a .55 coupon?
What are the kids learning if we become rude and obnoxious when the discount is not applied and we argue with the teenager behind the counter? Often, after I have walked away from a lost savings opportunity, I will find something unexpectedly on sale or the kids will find a coin on the ground. Savings sometimes doesn’t happen when you expect it.
I have heard of some parents that try to shield their children from the realities of money, but we think it’s important for the kids to learn about money while they are young!
Do you think it’s important to teach young children about money? What lessons do you think they are learning from us as parents? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
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