Talk to those kids about money, finances and investing

TEMPLE, Texas — Children begin to form their lifelong money habits as early as preschool. Behavioral researchers from Cambridge University encourage parents to start teaching their kids about money as young as three.

Certified financial planner Neil Vannoy says it’s never too soon to work with your children on the value of a dollar, telling 6 News, “You can use piggy banks to help young children start to learn about money. Once they learn the value of each coin, you can have them set aside amounts for giving to charity and spending on fun things like toys now, while teaching them that it’s important to leave some of the money in the bank for the future.”

When your kids become teenagers, try this trick. Write an amount on a piece of paper. Let your child keep the paper, and when he needs the money, he can trade in the paper for that amount, which is waiting in the bank. Your child will see that the money in the bank is no longer there after the check is presented, but that the paper still exists. 

Vannoy said when you have the checkbook out, invite the children to learn, saying, “For older children you can use a checking or savings account to teach them how to balance a checkbook and the importance of saving for a rainy day. Many institutions offer custodial accounts for children that aren’t old enough to have individual accounts, or you could open an account under your name and let your child treat is as if it were his or her own account.”

Also, make saving for a goal a priority, by getting them involved with investments that will affect that child. 

“Saving for college is something that most parents want to do for their children, so why not turn it into a learning experience?,” said Vannoy. “Children that understand bank accounts can relate…

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