Where to Have Money Talks With Your Kids

the-money-talk-and-your-kids-photoYou have decided that it is time to start teaching your kids about money – congratulations on that great first step.

Yet making that decision typically comes with a long list of how to questions.

One of those questions I hear asked is where exactly do I have these conversations?

It might seem a bit awkward to sit them down and have a serious conversation about money, especially if they are younger.  Your six year old probably won’t sit still long enough for a formal lesson!

Don’t worry you don’t have create a formal lesson plan and have big money lectures to teach your kids what they need to know about money.

Instead you can and should have those money chats everywhere!

The most effective way to teach is by showing and talking about money as it happens.

Here are some examples of places and conversations that might happen.

The Car

We have had many conversations in the car about money.  It is a natural place to strike up a conversation after shopping.

The Store

At the store you can cover topics like budgeting, comparison shopping, andneeds vs wants.  Instead of making all your buying decisions in your mind, turn it into a conversation with your child.

Talk about how you decide which product to buy, walk them through a per serving cost or the other factors that you look at when deciding such as quality.

If you are shopping for clothes discuss the differences between wanting the high end shoes and simply needing a pair that covers their feet but might not be the in brand at the moment.  Then continue this conversation in the car with how you could use the money saved on a lower cost item.

At Dinner

For those conversations where you do want to be able to look them in the eye and have a “formal” dialogue, use dinner time for those chats.  It keeps it serious, but not top level serous where you would be lecturing!

A great example is teaching about financial peer pressure, and how you make the decisions on what your child must buy.  It can be hard for a child to try and fit in and it is even harder when your financial rules are different from other parents.  This is definitely one you want to be able to see their reactions to and have focused time to talk about.

On a Walk

I love family walks, they are a great way to get some exercise and some quality chat time.  It is a good time to talk about things that just don’t fit in another situation.  You can either bring something up or ask your child if they have any questions for you.

No matter where you bring up money topics the important part is that you are talking about them!  Don’t be worried that you have to make this formal, just start the conversation.  That alone will put your child further ahead in life.

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