The opposite of spoiled: The right way to teach kids about money

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  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Sept. 1, 2013 8:00 a.m.

    In the school of hard knocks. I've learned the value of money. I have the big righteous house and after 10 years of making monthly payments I'm finely serious to make the bigger monthly payments. I see all that wasted money in interest gone lots and lots of money threw away. It hurts to realize how self righteous I've been. I know what I could of had now, money in the bank and not still paying, dept tired.

  • ER in AF Baghdad, 00
    Sept. 1, 2013 6:42 a.m.

    I am not the paragon of financial education. My father was his family's first to graduate university. We didn't have money, but his direction laid a foundation for me. I just passed the $million mark in net-worth and am proud. Now to the topic. What I have done is similar to the article. I do want my kids to participate in wealth building and be prepared to understand how to work to their own financial security. I have always worked an agreement; I pay half of anything they want to purchase. I want them to know wealth does not just happen. It is usually gained in tandem with someone else or another entity. If they want a $1000 dollar car: save $500. But they understand leverage; by saving double they can get a $2000 car. $5000? Save $2500. It teaches them to put off their want until they can really benefit from their savings. Do this with everything. Bikes, motocycles, education, cars, anything. They come up with ways to save because they know it is amplified by my backing. I can give them more than I had, and they can learn how to expand the wealth I leave them.

  • jeanie orem, UT
    Aug. 30, 2013 4:53 p.m.

    We stumbled into a little family business when our oldest was about 12. We made and sold craft items at local boutiques and festivals. As each of our kids arrived somewhere between the ages of 10 and 12 they joined the business - that was about the age they could make quality items. We decided that our kids would work for their spending money and stopped giving them allowances. This was one of the smartest decisions we made. They bought the supplies (with a loan from the Bank of Mom & Dad), made the products, and worked as vendors at our booths actively selling their products. As Mom I was the head manager, but each child had their specific jobs.

    By the time they were teenagers they had learned the difference between profit and cost, if you work more you earn more, the value of money, confidence in dealing with the public, and when they bought their own stuff we found they took better care of it and showed gratitude for what they had.

    I must say however, the biggest lesson for them was - the real origin of money is work, not Mom and Dad.

  • Logan Palmer, AK
    Aug. 30, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    I've been teaching financial education to people professionally for 17 years. The reason people fail is because they are ultimately selfish. You can provide all the tools and instruction in the world, but until their problems hurt them so badly that they take responsibility for their choices and the consequences of those choices they will never make any meaningful change. Teach your children they are responsible for their choices and let them live with the consequences. Isn't that what Christians believe God does to/for us? So why should we treat our children differently?