April 29 is Teach a Child to Save Day and we believe good financial habits should be encouraged early. With teenagers, talking about money is an evolving conversation. Here are some topics to consider when teaching your teens how to be responsible with their finances.
Teenagers are in a unique time in their lives. Some are getting jobs while others are thinking of college or their first car or apartment. Paying bills on time and saving every month are probably topics your teen hasn’t thought about and now is the time for you, as parents, to work with your child.
As your teen begins a summer job or continues to work through the school year, find him or her a way to budget that makes sense. Putting money directly into savings or beginning to pay part of their phone bill are good ways to start.
A good way to encourage your teen to save is helping them set a goal. Saving to pay his or her way on a spring break trip, a down payment on a new car or for college can all be good incentives for your teen to start saving.
Does your teen know how to open an account? Use a debit card? Make a deposit? The difference between checking and savings? Giving your teen an understanding of banking basics will help them immensely when they start managing their finances. A good way to illustrate banking basics is to take you teen to your local branch, help them open an account and speak with a banker.
Building Good Credit and Avoiding Debt
Credit card debt and bad credit is something that can take years to pay off and reverse. The best way to prevent that is for your teen to understand how credit works. Discussing payment schedules and understanding how to determine if something is affordable or not are both good topics to discuss about credit.
Talking with your teenager about money is an ongoing process. For example, after learning about budgeting or building savings, continue to talk and help your teen by going over statements and checking in on their goals.
If discussing these topics is something you aren’t comfortable with, try making an appointment with a local banker for you and your teen to learn together. You can contact a South State banker here.
For more tips about finances and your family, visit the Raising a Family section in our Advice Center.