Do you currently have kids of your own? Or, do you plan on having kids in the future? If you want them to make wise financial decisions when they’re older, I suggest that you continue reading.
What do you picture when you think of children today? For me, I think of video games, lack of exercise, and obesity…. I do not think of financial wisdom. But, just like anything else, kids must be taught the value of making wise financial decisions! And, who better to teach them than their parents! 🙂
When I was a boy, my dad had two jobs. His main job started at 5:30am and lasted until 3:30pm – he worked this job from Monday-Friday. For 26 years of his life, he also worked in the evenings (and Saturday) at his own car dealership. There wasn’t always a lot of time to play catch with my dad or go on fishing trips (although these did happen occasionally), but he did one thing extremely well, and I believe that it helped shape me into the financially wise man that I’ve become.
In order to gain a profit as a car dealership, it’s imperative that the dealer purchase cars for as little as possible and then have the ability to sell them for the highest possible gain (but in line with the market of course). My dad did this quite well, but rather than instruct me in all of his methods, he instead asked my opinion of different decisions he was about to make. He involved me in the process.
My dad knew that I often looked through car magazines like Auto Trader or Michigan Auto and RV, so he would ask me if I saw any good deals. Because of his interest in my opinion, I was always excited to share a few “good buys” with him. I distinctly remember walking up to him with many dog-eared pages of “good buys”. He would then take this magazine and follow up on my finds.
It sure made me feel great, and it also allowed me to learn a lot about buying and selling products (in this case, it was cars, but the lessons can be applied to anything)! I learned a great deal, just by being involved in the process.
Apply This Method to Your Children As Well
Kids tend not to learn so great when you’re shouting something in their face. Instead, teach your kids about personal finance through real-life events that are happening in your life.
For example, let’s say that your car is no longer reliable and it’s time to replace it. Include your child in on the car buying process. Ask them their opinion of buying a new car, a leased car, or buying something used.
Perhaps you’re looking for something that’s less than $8,000, but is less than 5 years old and gets great gas mileage. Ask your kids if they would like to help you research. I bet they would jump at the opportunity to help!
Ultimately, you have the final decision of course, but I bet your child’s research will be a valuable asset to your car purchase! They’ll love the fact that you value their opinion, and they’ll learn a ton in the process about spending money wisely.
Do you remember your parents teaching you anything this way? Do you think you’ll teach your children with this method someday?
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.