Money

Smart money habits for kids

Paul Clitheroe
Paul Clitheroe

IT'S easy to think your money habits are no one's business but your own. However when you have kids, nothing could be further from the truth.

Children, and especially teenagers, pick up a great deal from their parents' attitudes to money, and the message we send our kids about the way we handle our personal finances can stick with them for life.

In today's complex world, teenagers can be called on to make quite sophisticated financial decisions like selecting a mobile phone plan or comparing shopping deals offered online. That makes having a good understanding of the basics of money management just as important for children as reading, writing and maths.

Many financial institutions are making a worthwhile contribution, providing school and community-based programs aimed at helping kids develop key money skills.

Research group Canstar for instance, recently named the Commonwealth Bank as the winner of its Youth Banking and Education Award. Hume Building Society picked up the equivalent gong among the mutual banks, credit unions and building societies.

However it's mums and dads who play the pivotal role in helping their children develop sensible attitudes to money, and one of the best lessons kids can learn is the value of regular saving.

Getting children into the habit of setting aside a set amount of cash each week, fortnight or month can establish a pattern that could last into adulthood. Opening a savings account for your child provides practical experience in saving, with the added plus that interest can help their nest egg grow.

Primary age children are unlikely to need a transaction account, so look for a savings account that charges no fees and offers a decent rate of interest. Watch out for any conditions that may be imposed for your child to earn the top rate.

Secondary school students are likely to need a more functional transaction account especially if they have a part time job. Parents can use this as an opportunity to explain how bank fees can be charged, and discuss steps your child can take to minimise the cost.

Along with an everyday account, it's a good idea for high school kids to have a savings account. The two can be linked so that only a small amount of cash is held in the everyday account while the remainder of their savings continues to earn reasonable interest.

Parents can also help children establish saving goals. Even primary aged kids can follow a simple budget that shows how much they need to save each week to reach a particular target.

The key is to get children thinking about their money, and how they put it to work to their advantage.

If you're looking for inspiration, ask your school for age appropriate material they may have on financial literacy, or check out the 'Teaching your kids about Money' section on the government's Money Smart website www.moneysmart.gov.au

Paul Clitheroe is a founding director of financial planning firm ipac, chairman of the Australian Government Financial Literacy Board and chief commentator for Money magazine. Visit www.paulsmoney.com.au for more information.

Topics:  children money opinion paul clitheroe



Recognition for South Grafton's 'unsung hero'

Clarence electorate woman of the year Amanda Stacey surrounded by her family and many of her volunteers/supporters, including member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis

Amanda Stacey named Clarence Electorate Woman of the Year

Are you brave enough to Shave For A Cure?

Sarah Dougherty and Virlissa Adams, right, will lose their locks on March 16 to raise money for the Leukaemia Foundation.

Grafton disability organisation calling for participants

Money available for war memorials

Peter Leslie looks at the new flame on top of the Maclean cenotaph.

Groups invited to apply for funds

Local Partners

Recognition for South Grafton's 'unsung hero'

"SHE accommodates people from all walks of life, often young children who look to her for simple things such as breakfast or a safe place to do their homework."


Clean Up Australia makes a comeback in Iluka

Clean up Australia Day.

Annual event to be held on the Saturday before the markets

10 things to do this weekend

ON TOUR: Kasey Chambers and Bernard Fanning will play in Grafton this weekend as part of their Sooner or Later tour.

Looking for something to do?

Celebrating the Clarence Valley's unique story

Lynn Baker and Penny the detection dog. Penny will be in Grafton during Heritage Near Me Roadshow which arrive in early March. Photo: Jason O'Brien

Week-long celebration of Clarence Valley's heritage

'I wasn't naked': Blanca Blanco speaks out

BLANCA Blanco made headlines around the world after 'accidentally' flashing, but she says she was actually wearing a nude bodysuit.

‘IT’S A LITTLE SAD’: Trump makes Oscars bungle all about him

US President Donald Trump claims Hollywood's elite were too busy mocking him to pay attention on Oscars night.

Donald Trump ‘explains’ Oscars stuff up.

Lama and Sarah’s ‘epic’ MKR fail

My Kitchen Rules contestants Lama and Sarah.

Tempers flare as Lebanese feast turns into an epic fail.

Oscars 2017: How did biggest award get stuffed up?

Presenter Warren Beatty shows the envelope with the actual winner for best picture as host Jimmy Kimmel, left, looks on at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. The winner was originally announced as La La Land, but was later corrected to Moonlight.

'Guys in headsets starting buzzing around. They took the envelope.'

Lisa Curry can't marry her fiance

Lisa Curry breaks down in the jungle.

Lisa Curry says she can’t get married to her fiance

The true cause of the Oscars bungle

Faye Dunaway, left, and Warren Beatty present the award for best picture at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

The Oscars ended with a moment that left everyone speechless.

HUGE OSCARS FAIL: Wrong film handed Best Picture award

Presenter Warren Beatty shows the envelope with the actual winner for best picture as host Jimmy Kimmel, left, looks on at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. The winner was originally announced as La La Land, but was later corrected to Moonlight.

IN A monumental stuff-up, La La Land incorrectly named Best Picture.

Casino boss loses $4m on waterfront Sunshine Coast home

The owner of this stunning Noosa home accepted much less than he had initially wanted for the home.

When illness struck owner forced to try and cash out of property

Mining homes dive: $600k homes sell for $120k-$300k

18 Yeates Street, Moranbah sold for $135,000 in December, after being repossessed by a bank. The owners bought for $545,000 in August, 2011.

The economy still has two speeds, but with a painful twist

The trick homeowners are using to buy more properties

Chantelle Subritzky leaves her home each week for Airbnb guests.

Queenslanders are going down this path to help pay their mortgages

Stunning home blends South Pacific beauty with Orient style

Immaculate residence with two outdoor living areas

Historic home 'Fairweather' up for action

Fairweather

Historic property owned for last 35 years up for sale

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!