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Getting kids into the savings habit

Just like other behaviours, a child’s attitude to money is formed at a young age. With this in mind, it’s never really too early to teach kids about good savings habits.

Chances are if your child is exposed to any advertising at all (be it online or on TV), there’s probably no shortage of a must-have items they’ve set their sights on. Turn this to your advantage and use it as an opportunity to develop positive savings habits.
 

Ask your child to choose something they’d like to save for, and then work with them to find out how much it costs and how long it will take them to save for it from pocket money or what they earn for doing chores around the house. And if they get any extra money while they’re saving they can add this in as well.

Create a savings goals chart

A great way to visualise their goals is to create a savings chart you can display somewhere prominent (on the fridge is always a handy spot).

Put a picture of what they’re saving for alongside a box for every week they’ll need to save until they’ve reached their goal. Then each week they can add a sticker to a box as they reach closer to their savings goal. That way your child can track their progress easily by simply counting the number of boxes they’ve filled in and the number still to go to get to the end.

More than one goal? Try different coloured jars

If your child has more than one item they are interested in, you could use a different jar for each item.  Allocate one jar for each toy/item they would like they have and stick a picture of it on their jar (or maybe get them to draw a picture of it). Each time they get their pocket money or money for doing chores they can deposit different amounts in to each jar.

This is a great way to teach kids about positive saving habits as well as the importance of budgeting.

Keeping the motivation going with a rewards system

Although the aim is to teach your child to beneficial savings habits rewarding them when they reach certain milestones can be a great way to keep the motivation going. You could consider matching their contributions or putting in a bonus when they reach a certain amount; alternatively you might want to leave the saving to them, but reward them with a treat when they reach a milestone

Doing your bit – set a good example

Kids tend to learn their behaviour from what they see their parents doing and your savings habits are no different. That’s why it’s important you let your children save as well, so perhaps think about setting up your own savings jar for something you’re saving for and put money into it at the same time as your child.