The best financial advice you can give your kids when they graduate from college

Last night this question came up with some friends: what’s the best financial advice you can give your kids when they graduate from college?

My answer: None. Because by that time they will already (hopefully) know everything I know.

I’m not saying I have a lot of knowledge to pass on when it comes to finances. But I do know that teaching your children about finances should start early.

If you’ve found our blog while exploring our sweet baby hats, chances are you’re dealing with the under 10 crowd, right?

It’s never too early to start talking about money. Even a preschooler can appreciate a piggy bank, learning the value of saving up money rather than spending it immediately. You can get their attention first by talking about the different coins and then counting them together, etc.

My toddler was fascinated by the debit machine at the grocery store checkout when he was two. I started letting him run the debit card for me from his seat in the cart, to keep him occupied. Now I need to help make the connection between physical money and cards that handle the money transactions for us, too.

This article 18 Ways to Teach Children the Value of Money goes beyond spending and saving, reminding us that money involves everything from evaluating advertisements to budgeting, coupons, credit cards, interest, the economy and making wise choices. It’s a good place to start to get your mind prepped for the big picture. (Even though you’re in it as an adult, it’s easy to forget all the different facets when it comes to explaining things to kids, right?)

Next, fun games can help demonstrate real life financial decisions as your child grows a bit older. The Great Piggy Bank Adventure gets into some important concepts for 8-14 year olds, and here are some money games recommended by the Washington  Department of Financial Institutions.

And most of all, talk with your children about money as it comes up naturally, so they can understand how you’re making decisions.

What sort of things do you do with your kids to educate them about money?

A message to WOHMs from one SAHM
You, in your child’s eyes

Comments (1)

  1. Leslie Guenther

    I try to teach my kids that your money can work for you not against you. Only buy things you have the money for at the time of purchase. Never go negative. And needs and wants are very different. Also work smart and hard both will take you far.

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