Licensed Insolvency Trustee Trevor Pringle provides back to school shopping tips you can use to help teach your little student(s) how to budget.
Keeping your kids interested in anything that doesn’t show up on a tablet, phone or television screen can be challenging in a world full of distractions. Many parents today are looking to creative ways to engage their children in learning important life lessons outside of the school classroom. Important life lessons that include things like money management and budgeting.
“No parent wants to see their child grow up to experience financial instability or have debt problems. The key to helping our kids avoid debt trouble is to provide them with the basics of money management as early in life as possible.” Says LIT Trevor Pringle of our Hamilton/Niagara region. “Back to school shopping is a financial matter that directly concerns your kids. Include them in the planning, shopping and a review of what you spend to help them learn more about money management.”
Setting a Budget
Sit down with the kids and let them know you want to include them in planning for back to school shopping. If you’ve already set a budget, keep it to yourself and pretend that you need their help to determine how much they can spend this year. Guide them towards the amount that you know you can afford to spend.
“With kids it helps to give them guidance but empower them to come to their own conclusions about money. It makes a big difference when a young person understands that something is too expensive and accepts that they can’t have everything they want.” Trevor explains.
“Try to make comparisons your kids will identify with. For example, if you pay for Netflix and it costs $12.00 a month but your child selects a $30.00 calculator for school, explain that the calculator is worth more than two months of streaming. Show them a calculator that costs much less and give them perspective so that they will find value in lower priced items.”
Hunting for Deals
Make hunting for back to school deals into a fun game for your kids. Ask your kids to search for items in flyers or online. Have them create a “wish list” of back to school items they would like to have, where to buy them and what the price is.
“As an added bonus, you won’t have to do the coupon and bargain hunting yourself if you teach your kids how to do it for themselves.” Says Trevor.
Sticking to the Budget
Once you have a list of everything that your kids want/need for back to school, sit down before you go out to shop and review the list together one more time.
“Ask your kids to add up the cost of the items you’ve chosen and check to make sure they fall within your budget. Engage them in making adjustments if they’ve gone over budget. If they’ve done great and stayed within (or under budget) provide them with a reward for a job well done.” Trevor says.
“Empowering a young person to understand money and budget well, is a great investment in their future.” Trevor adds. For additional budgeting tips and information that can help you teach your kids about money, check out our website www.spergel.ca or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
One of the best ways to teach is by example. Now that your kids are headed back to school you should have some time to focus on yourself. Once you’ve finished up with school shopping, if you need help with a debt problem please call us to book your free, no-obligation consultation, 310-4321. Teaching your kids to budget is a great way to set them up for a debt-free future. Let us help you get there too. You owe it to yourself to discover how good debt free feels.