The Good Financial Habits You Can Teach Your Kids

It is a great feeling when you manage to teach your children something which is going to be of great use to them throughout their life. When you think of all of the things which you could teach them it is clear that good financial habits are among the more important.  

Don’t Buy Things You Don’t Need

I hate to see my daughter upset because she wants something I don’t want to buy for her. Sometimes this can be a little toy or a sweet which costs next to nothing. I know that the people who walk past as she lies on the ground crying think that I am a monster. Maybe I am a monster, but I want her to grow up knowing that you don’t need to go around buying every single thing which takes your fancy. When I was a kid my parents weren’t exactly flush with money, so I grew up treating every toy and every trip to the cinema as though it was something really special. This attitude has stuck with me and I would love for my daughter to feel the same way when she grows up, rather than being someone who fritters away money left, right and centre.

Start Saving

At what age should a youngster start saving? My little girl just turned three so I haven’t spoken to her about the possibility of opening her own savings account or dabbling in the stock market yet. However, it is certainly a good idea to judge when would be a good time to get your child to start saving money. A simple little piggy bank is a great start to get them into the savings habit. Having them save up to buy something they really want is definitely going to be better for them than just handing over the cash when they ask for it. As adults we know how hard it is to earn money and then to save it but the young ones need our help to understand this.

Think About Your Finances

Just thinking about your financial situation is one of the best ways of improving it. I am not talking about using the power of your mind to will extra money into your bank account. What I mean is that some people go through a big chunk of their life never thinking about how to make their money work harder for them. Some people barely even check their bank statements if truth be told. Of course, we don’t want to go too far the opposite way and spend all day counting our cash. However, it is a good idea to let the kids know that thinking about their finances is one simple way of making them better in the long run.

Don’t Waste Things

My daughter sometimes leaves food on her plate or stops using toys which are still perfectly fine. I was brought up to not waste things and I still think like this. If we are eating out in the restaurant and there is food left on the food I will think of ways of taking it home with us. Equally, if bread goes hard in our kitchen I will make a bread pudding out of it or crush it up into breadcrumbs to cook with. If you are quite comfortable financially this might seem like an unnecessary waste of time or even a bit embarrassing. However, the next time you throw out stale bread or leave food on your plate just think about the example you are setting to the younger members of your family.

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13 Responses to The Good Financial Habits You Can Teach Your Kids

  1. Luckily my 6 year old daughter already know the importance of money because from the very start that she understands I always told her that we are not rich. Sometimes when I want to buy her a new pair of shoes she insisted that we don’t need to buy a new shoes because her old shoes can still be usable. She has her cutie piggy bank that every time I gave her a 10 peso “Philippine Money” or less she put it in her piggy bank directly. :)
    Clarrise @ Make Money Your Way recently posted..Side hustle series: How I make money flipping phonesMy Profile

  2. dojo says:

    Children can be taught to have a responsible relationship with money and still not have them not enjoy their childhood. What you do now for your kids will shape them as future adults. And I’d rather have a responsible adult child and not someone who’s always in debt and can’t save a cent.
    dojo recently posted..Timothy Ferriss – The 4-Hour WorkweekMy Profile

  3. FI Pilgrim says:

    One of the things my parents did for me as a kid (that I really appreciate) was required me to split my allowance money up into envelopes when I received it. I was only allowed to “spend” 40% of my money on random stuff, which really helped me understand how a budget feels. The rest went to clothes, savings, and charity. Don’t underestimate how far those lessons can go!
    FI Pilgrim recently posted..September In Review – Income/Expense and Net WorthMy Profile

  4. My parents never let me buy all those toys in vending machines or the light up sticks at big events. In retrospect, I’m grateful. I used to work on a show where we’d sell those things for $20-$50 a piece. What a waste!
    Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life recently posted..Government Shutdown: Where’s Your Emergency Fund?My Profile

  5. These are great, and are all values and ideas my parents taught me. I think they’ve served me well so far! They also impressed upon me from an early age that money comes from somewhere – you don’t get it for nothing. You have to exchange your time and your effort for money. Somehow thinking of money as a representation of the work someone had to put in to earn it made it seem that much more valuable to me.
    Kali @CommonSenseMillennial recently posted..Fiscal and Physical Fitness: Two Linked ConceptsMy Profile

    • Robert says:

      Too true Kali. I told my daughter the other day that I need to sit at the computer to earn money. She said that she was going to play with her dolls to earn some money. If only…

  6. Great tips! It is so important we talk to our kids about money. They learn by observing us and don’t always understand what they see. We need to be open with them and help them think about how they should use their money. It isn’t always easy telling them “no” (they do have adorable faces after all!) but creating entitled kids who are use to getting everything they want isn’t truly preparing them for the real world either. I want my girls to have a healthy relationship with money and know to save money for the things that truly matter to them.
    Shannon @ The Heavy Purse recently posted..Phrases to Avoid When Talking about Money with KidsMy Profile

  7. My parents taught me how to wait for things and not give in to the instant gratification that our society now thrives on. When I was 10, I wanted a tent to camp in the backyard with my best friend. It was $90 and I only had $10. My parents didn’t buy it for me. They suggested I put it on layaway (back in the day, this was 100% free to do). Then each week, I would do my chores and they would drive me to Kmart so I could make a payment on the layaway. After a few weeks of many, many chores, I walked home with my new tent.
    Jon @ MoneySmartGuides recently posted..How PayAnywhere is Revolutionizing Paying for Goods and ServicesMy Profile

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