By Chris Cravens, Coffee Financial
As your child or grandchild matures, talk about how your family values, work and money. Continue to instill work ethics by allowing your preteen or teen to earn money by doing chores or errands, like washing cars, mowing lawns or babysitting. If you haven’t already, open a savings account for your child and explain how interest can compound over time as they save toward midrange goals. Discuss how to balance deposits and expenses to make sure your teen is living within his or her means. Children within this age range also should be able to conduct simple financial transactions, like writing a check, making a deposit, using an ATM and paying a bill.
Check Out Checking. Consider adding checking to your children’s accounts and teaching them how to balance their checkbook.
Divide And Conquer. Allocate a percentage of allowance or gift money toward saving, spending, investing and sharing buckets.
Chip In. Offer to “match” your child’s savings with a contribution of your own, say, a quarter for every dollar saved.
Get Defensive. Explain how to safeguard personal and financial information online, and how to spot scams aimed at stealing financial information.
Tip: Now’s a good time to discuss credit and its alter ego – debt. Discuss when to use credit cards and how quickly interest adds up. If you get a credit or debit card for your older teen, emphasize responsible use and how to keep personal information secure.