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Watching Your Wallet: Top tips for teens

Published: Jun. 7, 2022 at 4:37 PM EDT
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If you haven’t had the money talk with your teen, now may be the time. Nearly 47-percent of teenagers are employed and earning an income, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Rachel DePompa has the top financial topics you should discuss in this Watching Your Wallet.

Experts say there are some financial tips you should never avoid with your teen and even children of all ages can benefit from learning early in life.

The first is needs vs wants. Helping your child understand the difference between something you really want to buy ... and something you need to spend money on like food, clothes, and housing.

“I really believe the sooner we can invest in teaching our children basic things on when it comes to our finances the better off they will be as adults,” said Cherry Dale, a financial coach with the Virginia Credit Union. She’s hosted many workshops for parents and teens about money talks.

She says sit down with your child and talk about financial goals. Maybe it’s saving for a Disney vacation.

Involve your child in the plan to save. Show them when you as a family are cutting back on other expenses to save for it. She says make sure they understand you need income coming in, in order to have money to spend.

“So the sooner they can understand they’ve got to have money either in their piggy bank or their checking account, it will translate on later in life.”

Talk about how they will earn money. Be it through chores, and allowance or a job. And the biggest lesson you can impress upon them? Pay yourself first. Make sure they set aside money to save in a piggy bank... or if they are old enough in a savings account at a bank.

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