Christine Affleck Consultant, Traralgon branch
When families with young children come into the branch I take the opportunity to encourage them to talk to their kids about money.
I have found it useful to do so while raising my own kids. I liken it to teaching them any other skill - playing a sport or a musical instrument – the earlier you start, the stronger the skills.
An easy way to start is with the basics of saving. Here are my top five tips:
Give them money to save
The first step to saving money is earning it, and pocket money is a tried and tested system. Encourage your kids to do odd jobs around the house and pay them a reasonable amount – I’d suggest about $10 a week.
Choose something to save for
Having a reason to save is important. Teach your kids to set aside their pocket money for something they want, and it doesn't have to be just one thing. Part of managing money is prioritising where you spend it, so two savings goals might be better than one.
Make a plan
Now that they know what they’re saving for, help them work out how long it will take and make a chart with boxes to check off as they reach milestones.
Make it fun
Ask your kids to draw pictures of what they’re saving for on envelopes or jars, and use stamps or stickers to tick off boxes in their chart each week. A small ritual can help keep them on track.
Match their contributions
This can be a good way to encourage your kids to save extra money. I suggest you only do this when they’ve done a particularly good job, as I’ve learned that an unexpected reward is valued much more than something expected.
Remember, if you need to deposit your kids cash into an account, our mySaver account is a fee free savings account with bonus interest for kids under 25.