Vantage Point

Teach your youth healthy habits for saving—and spending!

According to a 2022 poll, * only 39% of children in the United States own a savings account. The road to financial success is a life-long journey. Establishing healthy habits from an early age—for saving and spending—can start your child’s financial journey off on the right foot.

What financial products do you have in place for your child?
Parents have a huge responsibility. That’s a given. You’re the first teacher your child will have. Your child will emulate what you do. From manners to money matters, and everything in between, they’re learning from you.

Have you been saving up that birthday money and spare change for your child in a piggy bank? That’s a great start! Your next step is to set up a savings account. Make sure you take your child along and walk them through the process, if they’re old enough.

Want to take it a step further? Help them create a savings goal. Maybe it’s to deposit birthday money, spare change or allowance in their account four times a year. Maybe it’s something they’d like to buy—credits in a game, a specific toy or future car, special shoes, even an experience. Choose a goal that’s achievable and stay consistent. Establishing a routine of regular saving is a healthy financial habit you can teach your child that will serve them their entire life.

Go beyond savings accounts.
What else could you do to help your child learn to manage money wisely? Talk about different ways to approach money management. Will you save your money, spend it or share it? Finding the right balance among those three concepts will help them realize they have options when it comes to using their money.

Introduce the concept of budgeting—it’s an important life skill and can be taught in a child-friendly way. Talk about needs versus wants. Real life scenarios can help reinforce these lessons. Take them to a store and help them purchase a wish-list item like a toy car or baby doll with money from their savings to show them how the process works. The financial habits children take with them through the teenage years and into adulthood originate primarily from their parents. **

Join Agent Redfox on his search for savings!
Did you know Vantage even has a club for our youngest savers? Our Secret Savers Club makes saving money fun. Children ages 0 to 10 can receive cool goodies, enter fun contests, get invited to exclusive events AND learn about the importance of saving money and spending wisely.

Have a child older than 10? It’s never too late to get them started. Use the same principles above relating it to where they are and what they would like to afford. When they turn 13 or start their first job, help them open a checking account and begin teaching them how to use a debit card. Guide them through using digital banking to track their balances and utilize different accounts for short-term and long-term savings goals. Build their financial muscle so they have strong habits when it’s time to branch out on their own.

If you’d like tools and aids to help you teach money concepts to your children, or maybe strengthen your own knowledge, check out our financial resources available to you free of charge. We believe part of the credit union difference is empowering members in making their own financial decisions. People Helping People.

If your child doesn’t have an account with Vantage, open one today!

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* Source:

** Source: Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning, page 259.