Money Management for Teens
"A dollar today is worth more than a dollar tomorrow." The dollar is only worth more if something you do today can increase its value for tomorrow. Here are some basic tools to help your teen learn the value of earning and saving money.
Earn and Save Money
A lot of teenagers have discovered more things they want to buy, which makes it hard to save. When your teenager wants something he or she can't afford, an option is to create small jobs around your home or ask if friends and family are looking for help. There are also many summer job opportunities that can teach your teen responsibility as well as help him or her earn some money. For ideas on summer jobs please visit: www.cvtips.com/career-choice/52-summer-job-ideas.html.
Once your teen has started to earn money, help him or her set savings goals. A good habit can be to encourage teens to "pay themselves first" by adding as much as 20% of the money earned to their savings accounts every time they receive an allowance, a gift, or pay from a summer job. Breaking down daily savings will also help teens manage their spending habits. If they want to buy a $200 item within the next three months, they should plan to save about $67a month or just $2.23 a day!
Where to Keep Your Money
Credit unions offer several different ways to save money and earn interest, which is what these institutions pay customers for the privilege of holding their money. Members can usually choose from several accounts with different features, fees, interest rates, and opening balance requirements.
Spend Money Wisely
Teaching teens to practice self-control can help them reach saving goals and limit spending. Encourage them to avoid making hasty buying decisions. Limit the amount of cash your teen carries around. When making a purchase, show him or her how to research the quality and reputation of the item on-line. Compare the item's price at multiple store locations to find the best deal. Make sure your teen takes care of the items purchased. It's not cheap to replace things.
Protect Against Identity Theft
It's important to know that thieves target young people too. They can use a victim's name, address, and social security number to open accounts. Make teens aware that their information is private and should not be given to strangers. For instance they should never give personal information in response to a phone call, e-mail or a pop-up ad on the Web, no matter how official it might look. Help educate your teen to review all account statements for any errors or fraudulent activity. For more details please visit www.consumers.gov/idtheft.
Who Can Help Me?
There are many more ways to help your teen save and prepare for long term investing. To better understand the options for yourself and your teen, the financial professionals here at your credit union will work closely with you to see what investments are the right fit. They can also provide advice on college savings and keeping your family in line with these goals.
Have You Read...
The Richest Man in Babylon, by George Samuel Clason.
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* Non-deposit investment products and services are offered through CUSO Financial Services, L.P. ("CFS"), a registered broker-dealer (Member FINRA/SIPC) and SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Products offered through CFS: are not NCUA/NCUSIF or otherwise federally insured, are not guarantees or obligations of the credit union, and may involve investment risk including possible loss of principal. Investment Representatives are registered through CFS. UFCU has contracted with CFS to make non-deposit investment products and services available to credit union members.