The life-long benefits of teaching children good money habits make it well worth the effort. Children who are not taught these lessons pay the consequences for a life-time. Here are a few guidelines to consider:
- Guide and advise rather then direct and dictate.
- Encourage and praise rather than criticize or rebuke.
- Allow children to learn by mistakes and by successes.
- Be consistent while taking children’s differences into account.
- Include all family members in money management discussions, decision making, and activities as appropriate for their age.
- Explain to children what they can and cannot do and the consequences of violating the limits.
- As children get older increasingly include them in discussions of limits and consequences.
- Expect all family members to perform unpaid, routine household chores based on their abilities.
- Express your desire to have things you can’t afford. Children need to know that parents say “no” to themselves, too.