Are you Passing These Financial Habits on to Your Children?
You might be concerned that your children never listen to you. The good news (and
the bad news) is that your children are always watching. Kids quickly assimilate your
habits and attitudes regarding money. Are you demonstrating habits that will help or
harm their financial future?
When faced with uncertainty, it’s common to rely on experience. When your children
grow up and face financial situations, they’re going to mimic what they know. It’s up
to you to set an example that will enhance their financial future.
It’s likely you haven’t considered what you’re inadvertently teaching your kids about
money. Today is a wonderful day to start.
Financial habits that make life more challenging:
- Using credit cards unwisely. This may be the most devastating financial habit
to acquire. Credit cards are convenient and can be an effective way to get
yourself out of a financial jam, but the use of credit to purchase unnecessary items
is one of the leading causes of financial stress and bankruptcy.
2. Giving in to impulse purchases. Children already have impulse issues.
Witnessing a lack a financial control by a parent makes self-control even more
elusive in the future. Show your children that purchases should be decided
ahead of a shopping trip.
3. Not sticking to the budget. Sticking to your budget is another demonstration of
financial self-control. Allow your children to know that a budget exists and the
certain purchases can’t be made because of the budget.
4. Not making a clear distinction between needs and wants. Demonstrate to
your kids that needs are to be taken care of first. Wants are only considered after
the critical items have been addressed.
Avoid demonstrating these financial habits to your children. Remember that they’re
always watching you!
But not all habits are negative. There are many positive financial habits you can help
your children to develop by setting a good example.
Are you sharing these positive financial habits?
- Consistent saving. Make a big deal out of saving money from each paycheck.
Encourage your child to do the same with a portion of any money they earn or
receive as a gift. If you had saved 15% of each paycheck since you started
working, how much would you have today?
A robust savings account is an effective solution to many of life’s financial
2. Paying bills on time. Your children see those bills with the words “Past Due.”
They also notice when you avoid the bill collectors that call day and night. Pay
your bills and avoid the late fees. You’ll also be setting a great example for your
3. Sacrifice. Making great financial strides requires sacrifice. Let your children
know that you’re not buying a new car because it’s more important to save for
their college or retirement. Give them the option of making a small purchase at
the sacrifice of something else. All financial decisions have positive and negative
4. Enjoying the rewards of financial responsibility. No one wants to sacrifice all
the time. The whole point of sacrificing is to enjoy the end result. Show your
children that regularly saving money results in a vacation or a new television.
Let your kids see the positive outcome of good financial habits.
Are you demonstrating good financial habits to your children? Are you
demonstrating poor habits? You have a tremendous amount of influence over your
child’s financial future. They’re likely to behave in a fashion similar that which they
observe. Consider what you’re teaching your child each day with your money habits.