1. Open a Savings Account. Opening an account and making deposits is a great start when teaching kids to save. Set a goal and encourage your child to make regular contributions to the account. This will get them get in the habit of planning a budget and thinking about long term goals. Community Bank for example offers the Acorn Checking Account for children under 18, and many banks offer similar accounts.
2. Give Them an Allowance. If you want to teach your kids to be savers, they’re going to need money to save. Help them get there by assigning them household chores in exchange for a regular allowance. Then, encourage them to save their allowance on a weekly basis to watch it grow.
3. Get a Piggy Bank. This is how most kids start saving, but a piggy bank can be more than the pink pig you’ve seen a thousand times. Encourage your children to budget money for spending, saving and donating. Getting them into this habit early will teach them the value of saving and donating throughout life.
4. Create a Budget. Keeping a budget can help children see where their money is going and how far they are from reaching their financial goals. Perhaps there’s a bike or special toy your child wants to purchase. Establish a budget to determine how much they’ll need to save and how long it will take to reach their goal.
5. Teach Them the Value of a Dollar. Showing kids real world examples will help them learn how much items cost. For example, when at the grocery store, tell them how much it costs to purchase a gallon of milk or loaf of bread. You can also show them how you’re choosing store brands or generic products over brand names.
6. Go to the Bank. If you have elementary-aged children, bringing them to the bank can be a fun learning experience. Let them help you at the bank and explain what you’re doing and why. For example, ask them to double-count any cash you withdraw or deposit at the teller line.
7. Lead by example. The best way to teach your kids how to save is to lead by example. Put money aside each month in a savings account to pay for a trip, for instance, and explain to your children why you’re doing this. With some guidance at an early age, you can help them understand financial responsibility.
If you have questions on how to teach your children to save, contact Community Bank at 708-660-1000, or visit our website at www.cboprf.com. Community Bank has two locations: 1001 Lake Street, Oak Park and 7777 Lake Street, River Forest.
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