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Teaching Kids About Money

Teaching your children and grandchildren about money - which means going beyond simply telling them "money doesn't grow on trees" - is one of the greatest legacies you can leave.

A Wall Street Journal article from a few years ago provided some guidelines that are still relevant today with The 15 Money Rules Kids Should Learn:

1. Spending money happens only after you earn it.

2. When kids start asking parents to drive to the toy store to buy some plastic whatnot, it's time to consider an allowance.

3. The size of an allowance shouldn't be so meager that your child is a pauper among peers, nor so generous that your child can easily afford all wants with little financial planning.

4. Good grades are expected and help around the house is simply the price of family life.

5. While 16 is generally the legal age of employment, encourage kids starting around age 13 to think of ways they can earn an income.

6. Guide and advise your kids about money, but don't dictate.

7. Failure to balance the debit-card bank account monthly means losing access to the debit card for a week or more; failure to repay an entire month's credit card balance means the loss of the card until the balance is fully paid off, plus one additional month.

8. Only 50% of the money put into a piggybank can be taken out to buy something. At least half must remain inside the pig.

9. Children should have the right to screw up financially so they can learn from their mistakes.

10. When it comes to investing in stocks, kids should understand a company at such a basic level that they can draw a picture of the business model with a crayon.

11. You don't need to be wealthy to begin teaching your children about the stock market.

12. If a child's charitable interests lie outside your special interests, so be it.

13. Parents don't have to save every last dime a child will need for college expenses. You only have to save up to your ability or desire to pay.

14. One of the greatest gifts you can give your child is your own financial self-sufficiency when you're old.

15. At some point, you have to tell your kids that the Bank of Mom & Dad is officially closed.

The Flanigan Law Group provides Southern California residents with personal attention for estate planning, administration and litigation legal services. When disputes between families, arise, they are very successful in resolving legal estate issues quickly and efficiently while preserving financial and emotional resources. Contact the Flanigan Law Group at 949-450-0041.

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