Saving Instead of Spending

EWS College Newsletter
October 2015

Saving money isn’t a habit that we’re all born with.  While there are people who seem like natural savers, the majority of people need to learn this behavior.  As a parent of a young child, you can help them focus on saving rather than spending.  It helps set them up for a life of financial success.

Open a Savings Account – Piggy banks are great. However, an official bank account can help a child feel more involved in their financial decisions.  It also makes them take an active role in putting money into their account.  Young children often need a parent to be on the account with them. 

Match Funds – Consider creating a matching program with your child.  For every dollar they save, you’ll match it with a dollar of your own.  Most children understand that this is a good deal. 

Set Goals – Depending on the age of your child, you can help them set a variety of goals.  For example, if your child loves horses you can encourage them to save for a horse riding lesson.  If they want a new dog or a pair of the latest athletic shoes, they can save for those too.  If they are older, they may want to save for a car or for college.

Give Them an Allowance – If you decide to give your child an allowance, teach them to use it by setting goals, budgeting the money, and making them use their allowance for things they want. 

Make It Fun – Visual aids work for adults and children alike.  Consider creating a savings goal chart.  Like the fundraising thermometers, as they reach their goal, the mercury in the thermometer rises and new lines are drawn on the chart.  You can create a similar visual aid for your child. 

The Jar Method – For particularly young children, some experts recommend using a jar method. Some of their money goes into a jar that is labeled for spending. Some goes into a jar for donating/tithing.  The rest goes into a “saving” jar.  Label the jars and have your child decorate the jars with you. 

Encouraging children to save can begin when they’re young enough to begin wanting items for themselves.  If they’re old enough to point at an item in the toy store, they’re probably old enough to begin learning about money.  The skills they learn at a young age will stay with them into adulthood.

At Everett Wealth Solutions, Inc. we are in the business of helping families through the major life transition of sending their children to college.  For many, it will be the most expensive time of their lives and, if not handled properly, could cost them their retirement.  If you or someone you know needs the help and guidance of a trained financial professional, don’t hesitate to contact me.  Remember, you shouldn’t have to choose between your child’s college and your retirement.