Aussies may have a natural reserve when it comes to talking money. But as parents, teaching our kids to be financially aware and responsible takes more than a few quick lessons about money and the opportunities and pitfalls it can create.
Teaching opportunities will come and go as our children grow. If you’re a relaxed sort of money parent, then maybe you’re happy to freestyle and just take these chances as they come. But if you’re keen to create teaching moments by design, it can help to know what other people do and when are the best windows in your child’s development to introduce new financial concepts.
Make an early start
In 2018, 1000 Australian parents were surveyed about how they teach their kids about money for the Share the Dream report. Results show that half of
But according to a Cambridge University research study from 2013, parents could be missing a trick if they’re waiting until kids turn nine to start pocket money. Their findings suggest that by the age of seven, kids have already acquired the mindsets that will direct their money habits in adulthood. Not only that, but they’re also capable of grasping the fundamentals of how money works at this age. They understand that money can be exchanged for goods and that you need to earn it first.
Dr David Whitebread,
Make it holistic
As well as starting money lessons early, stats from the Share the Dream report also suggest that money talk from parents needs to be covering more ground. Many parents are definitely covering off the basics, with the majority of parents (52%) having talked with kids about spending and saving in the last six months. On the other hand, talking about cashless payments with kids is far less common. Only 19% of parents have spoken about online transactions in the same period, and the numbers discussing in-app purchases (13%) and Afterpay (5%) are smaller still.
The study also shows that there may be advantages to being more forthcoming about ‘invisible’ money transactions with our kids. Across all age
Make it open and honest
Talking money with our kids can make us feel uncomfortable and this is a trend that was also revealed in the Share the Dream survey. 68% of parents sometimes feel reluctant to talk about money with their children and in the majority of cases (32%), it’s because they don’t want their kids to worry about it. And 19% of parents say they don’t feel good enough about their own financial situation to discuss it as a family.
While financial stresses can be very real to you, there may be a way for you to help your kids learn from your own ups and downs with money without causing them concern. In fact, the ‘Engager’ parent profile identified in our survey shows that having more family discussions about money can lead to their kids being more curious, confident and financially literate. Engagers are least reluctant to talk to their kids about money and it seems their honest approach is leading to more positive habits among their children, 56% of whom are likely to have a job, compared with the survey average of 44%.
Source: Money and Life. 30th August 2018