The Art Of Teaching A Teenager The Value Of Money

It seems that there are more and more things for teenagers to spend money on each day. There are mp3 players, designer sports shoes, expensive clothes, video games and so much more. If, like nearly everyone, you have not been blessed with wealth, then it is obviously hard to give your teenagers everything they want and, as a result, it is very important that we help them to understand the value of money.

It is extremely important to begin to teach your kids about money from a young age. Beginning at about the age 10 you should give them a few dollars each week which they can spend in whatever way they want. This weekly allowance should not ‘free’ but ought to be dependent on their undertaking some household chores. You must however work with your children and allow them to what they want to do rather than assigning them particular tasks. It is also important that you do not set limits on what they can spend their allowance on and also that, having given them allowance, you do not then simply continue buying them the things they want. They need to, and quickly will, find out that if they spend all of their allowance the moment they get it they will not be able to get some of the more expensive items they want.

It is also very important for you children to learn the principles of budgeting at a young age and discover exactly how much things cost. Take them to the mall when you go out shopping, get them to help you with working out the household budget and let them look over your shoulder when it comes to paying the bills. It will not take them very long to get a feel for exactly how expensive day to day living can be.

As your kids get older, and certainly by the time they have reached the age of about 13 or 14, slowly raise both their level of responsibility and their weekly allowance. For example, include their lunch money in their weekly allowance and give them the responsibility of buying their own lunch. As they accept greater responsible, show them how to prepare a budget for bigger items like an mp3 player or clothes, and force them to stick to that budget. Again, you will discover that they will soon learn that if they want to purchase expensive items, they have to make sacrifices.

Do not forget also that you can backtrack. If you discover that your kids are not learning to use money sensibly and for its intended purpose, then do not be afraid to step in and take back control of that money until you are satisfied that they are able to handle it.

At some point, your teenager will get a job and this is one of the best points at which to introduce them to the benefits of saving. Get them to put a percentage of their wages into a savings account which they should come to regard as a resource for funding major projects, like their college education or another significant pursuit. Additionally, get them to put a small amount of their wages on one side to pay for less important, but nonetheless expensive, items like a computer or video game system. After they have made these provisions, you should let spend the rest of their money in whatever ‘crazy’ manner they choose and, if you are concerned about where they are spending their money, then open up a checking account for them which you can monitor.

Teaching your kids the value of money can be a lengthy and slow process which takes a number of small steps and is not going to be without its problems. Your kids, and especially your teenagers, will screw up but do not forget that we learn some of our most valuable lessons as a result of the mistakes we make.