A child who does not receive a financial education will surely be an adult struggling to manage his own finances.
Of all the areas that involve raising a child, finance is certainly the most neglected, unfortunately. This is for several reasons: from the resistance of some parents – who believe that money is not something for children – to the absence of this theme in formal education, in the midst of school subjects.
Experts on this matter differ on the right time to talk about finance with young people, but they are unanimous in understanding that financial education starts at home. And it should start early. This is because, according to data from Serasa Exporian, young people between 18 and 25 years form the second most indebted age group in Brazil, behind only adults between 41 and 50 years.
So that early adulthood is not compromised with debt, it is important that parents talk to their children about finances. If you have young children and do not know where to start, we have separated 5 lessons that can guide this mission. Check out:
1. You should not spend more than you earn
This basic rule will accompany us throughout our lives, so nothing more correct than working this understanding early on. Allowance can be an effective tool for this. Set a monthly or weekly amount your child will receive and what types of purchases they can make. This is a good opportunity to show that you have to make choices, as there will certainly be more items of desire for the child than allowance money to win them.
2. Money is not born in a tree.
In times of electronic money, it is perfectly understandable that the child does not have the notion that money comes out of a finite fund. How many parents have not heard “but just pass the card” as a suggestion of the little in the face of a negative request for a purchase? Explain that money comes from work, that it will also have a day, and that every small purchase is one less part of a whole.
3. (Almost) Everything Has a Price
It is important to share with the child that almost everything she has available has a cost: the toy, the movie afternoon, the clothes she wears, the school she attends. No need to go into detail, nor is something to be remembered all the time. What is unhealthy is for the child to grow up with the illusion that it all fell from the sky.
4. Not Everything Is Money
It is perfectly possible to get new things without involving money by exchange. The barter of goods is a form of trade relationship and new technologies, as well as the concept of shared economy, have favored this kind of movement. Exchanging toys with a school friend can be a good excuse to talk about it with the kids.
5. Give example
This may be the most important and difficult lesson you can leave for your children – and it goes beyond financial education. There is no point talking about conscientious use of money if you do not practice it on a daily basis. The risk of saying one thing and doing the opposite is losing authority by example. Mistakes happen – and are part of any learning. Do not hide yours or condemn the child when she commits any.
A good milestone for starting this subject with children is the phase in which she begins to do basic math math for obvious reasons. There is no ideal age, because as parents well know, each child has his or her own speed of development and learning. The important thing is not to let this theme go blank!