How we view money - in the form of our financial beliefs and behaviours - is largely influenced by what we learn from our parents and those around us while we’re a child.
To help you raise money-savvy children, we’ve come up with five easy tips that you can introduce to your children while they’re young to help them understand what money is all about and ensure they develop a positive attitude towards it.
Knowing when to start talking to a child about money is less about the science and more about the child - each child is different and you will know best when it feels appropriate based on your child’s development and curiosity.
Look for opportunities to teach your children about money every day through simple and practical things. For example, letting them handle notes and coins and receive change when food shopping can help them with the concept of exchanging money for goods and services. Or, while watching TV, you could ask questions about adverts you see and if your child thinks that product would be a good use of money or not, to get them thinking.
Setting a budget
To help your children understand value and cost, set a budget together for a couple of days for certain things - maybe an agreed list of activities and snacks, and put your child in charge of the budget. If they want something not included in the agreed budget, they will learn that something must be taken out from the list as a result; helping them learn how to make choices and the consequences of spending decisions.
Save for the things you want
To introduce the concept of saving up for something they really want, why not ask your child to choose something they’d like to buy and create a piggy bank for them to put their pocket money into. By watching the money build up towards their goal, they will learn how it takes patience and commitment to save for the things they want. If you don’t give your child pocket money, you could use your own money and place it in the piggy bank together, it will still help them understand the concept of putting money aside and watching it grow over time.
Practice what you preach
Children learn from the example you set through your money beliefs and behaviours. For example, if you go into the shop to buy a set list of items and end up buying more than you’d planned, your child will notice. On the other hand, if you’ve managed to save for an item that you finally get to buy it, talking about the process with your children could help them understand the benefit of saving. Overall, setting clear intentions and stickicking to them could inspire your children to pick up on your behaviours and replicate them in the future.
It’s important to have open and honest conversations when it comes to money, especially with children, who can often feel pressured to have the latest gadgets, toys or clothes to keep up with their friends. Children can sense when you’re stressed or worried, so if they’re being pushy about wanting something, don’t be afraid to have a conversation - it’s the perfect opportunity to talk about the cost of things and the importance of saving for the things they want.
Managing money as an adult is not always easy, that’s why we hope these fundamental principles help your children develop good financial habits from a young age and provide them with the basic tools to manage their money more effectively.
Important: This is an option, not a recommendation. Your employer does not benefit from offering this service and all your communications will be with Salary Finance Limited trading as Neyber. Loan applications will be assessed to ensure the loan is appropriate and affordable for you. This content is for guidance and educational purposes only and is generic in nature. Salary Finance Limited trading as Neyber does not offer regulated financial advice. Please seek independent financial advice.