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Haley's Weekly Family Finance Picks (#5)

This is entry #5 in a weekly summer series by "guest blogger" and FamZoo summer intern Haley Dwight.

My top three family finance picks for this week are:

Five Financial Concepts Your Child Should Know by Andrew Salmon for Our Kids

Learn How to Budget Early On!

Andrew encourages teaching your child five concepts about money:

  • the value of hard work,
  • wants vs. needs,
  • compound interest,
  • how credit cards work,
  • and budgeting fundamentals.

These are all important ideas for children to become familiar with before entering the adult world. On the budgeting topic, Andrew says the right time to start is “once your child is earning a regular pay check in place of a weekly allowance”. Here’s where I’d disagree a bit. There’s no reason to wait until a child is of working age to teach good budgeting habits. Why not put your child in charge of an expense like clothing earlier on? Have the child work out a budget with you, and then give them an allowance that matches that budget.

Allowance Tips to Raise Good Money Managers by Kim Grigg for Yuma Sun

Kim provides clear guidelines on which money skill to “teach” and what “tool” to use at each age level: pre-schoolers, elementary-schoolers, tweens, and teens.

Kim mentions that the time to start a savings account for your child is elementary school. Something to consider: If setting up a savings account in a real bank for your youngster sounds like a bit of a hassle for a relatively small balance, you might consider starting with a virtual savings account in FamZoo. You can teach the same lessons about the power of compounding interest (you get to set the rate and compounding period) as well as the discipline of saving a portion of your regular income (say ten to twenty percent of allowance a week). Children can easily log on to FamZoo to watch their account grow with every allowance and interest deposit! My youngest brother, Quintin, even likes to deposit extra change he finds laying around (possibly from Dad’s coin jar…), and his savings account has grown a significant amount!

Once the virtual savings balance builds up to a significant amount, you might choose to roll it over to a real savings account as suggested in the article.

A New Tool to Teach Children About Money by Jennifer Saranow Schultz for The New York Times Bucks Blog

OK, I couldn’t resist this one: FamZoo is featured in the New York Times personal finance blog!! See what my dad has to say about his growing company :)

To top off the week, we were also featured on HLN’s Morning Express with Robin Meade in a family finances segment by Jennifer Westhoven.

It was a big week for FamZoo in the media. Woohoo!

FamZoo on HLN Morning Express with Robin Meade

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