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Bite-sized Family Finance Tips Baked Fresh Daily

Bite-sized Family Finance Tips Baked Fresh Daily

As part of our ongoing research at FamZoo, we’re constantly scouring the literature for fresh articles on family finance. We extract the best advice on how to raise kids who are responsible and thoughtful with money.

Now there’s a way to consume the very best tips we find, one manageable bite at a time. It’s called Family Finance Favs. (That’s short for “favorites” and has the long “a” sound like in “hey!”)

January’s tips included:

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Popmoney Makes Loading Your Prepaid Card from Your Checking Account a Snap

Snapping hand

Prepaid cards are surging in popularity — even among those who already have traditional checking accounts and credit cards. Why? Here are a few key reasons “banked” consumers like using prepaid cards:

  • Limit fraud exposure. Nobody can spend more than what’s loaded on your prepaid card. Nobody can use it to run up your debt or clean out the money sitting in your checking account. That makes consumers more comfortable transacting at unfamiliar online sites or potentially “sketchy” establishments. Load a limited budget on the card before making your purchase and set up transaction alerts to keep an eye on activity. If you see something amiss or lose your card, lock it right away, unload any remaining funds, and order a new one. No problem. Replacing a limited-use prepaid card is a lot less hassle than replacing your main bank debit card or credit card.
  • Keep spending within budget. Prepaid cards are a modern upgrade to the classic cash envelope budgeting system. Instead of stuffing cash in an envelope labeled “Clothing”, load your monthly clothing budget onto a separate prepaid card. That way, you can make purchases just as easily online as in stores. It’s the convenience and protection of a credit card, without the risk of overspending.
  • Manage allowance and chore money. A prepaid card is a convenient, safe way to put money in your kid’s hands: no fumbling with small change, easy to use online for gaming subscriptions or purchases, easy to lock and unload funds if lost or stolen, automatic audit trail, and no risk of running up a debt. Much better than cash. Certainly much better than letting your kid use your credit card. An excellent warm-up for adult banking products.

Cool. So how do you load money onto your prepaid card from your checking account?

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The 5 Things I Want To Teach My Kids About Money Fit On A 4 By 6 Index Card

Money Mentor Index Card

Keep it simple, stupid. Keep it short too.

I was reminded of the famous KISS principle while reading Ron Lieber’s recent New York Times Your Money column about distilling your financial to-do list to a set of bullet points that fit on a 4 by 6 index card.

The examples in Ron’s article inspired me to produce this variant: a “Money Mentor Index Card” listing the key things I want to teach my kids about money. Here’s the list.

I want to teach my kids about: