Serve Magazine from Concordia Plan Services Winter 2017 - Page 13

Remember that this applies to eating out and other activities, not just purchasing items. You can explain that your budget (or jar) for eating out allows you to go out only once a week. Explain Taxes You walk to the checkout, and there are $0.99 candy bars. Your child has $1, which won’t cover the tax. How do you explain it? Talk to your kids about how taxes go to pay for all kinds of necessities that are provided by the local, state and federal government. Everything from the road that you’re driving home on, the police station and park you pass along the way, the streetlights near your road — all these things are made possible by the taxes that are collected. And because everyone uses these services, everyone helps pay for them. If your daughter is saving for a special t oy, have her add taxes to the cost of the item. You can round taxes up to be about $0.10 for every $1 spent, so she’ll know for sure that she’ll have enough for her purchase. If it ends up being a little less, the leftover money can be placed back in the jar. Using Credit Cards Let Them Give You’re checking out with a cart full of necessities, and you pull a magic card out of your wallet that lets you leave the store with everything you need. You didn’t have to give them money — all you had to do was swipe! At least, that’s how it looks to your child. So take the time to explain that you’ll receive a bill from the “magic card” company that has your grocery store purchases on it, so they understand that you’re still responsible for the payment. The older your child is, the more details you can give about interest and fees that are associated with the credit card. Remind them that what goes on the card comes out of your bank account later. Help your children realize that as Christians, they need to share their resources and blessings with others. It’s our duty out of thanksgiving to God to help support our church and the preaching of the Gospel, and contrib- uting financial support is just one of the ways that we do this. You don’t want to dictate how much they give, because you want them to give willingly and in thanksgiving for blessings received, not because of pressure. If your kids want to give back to the community, help them choose a charity that has special meaning to them. In addition, letting them purchase items for a char- ity can help them make a connection about helping others. For example, let your daughter use the money she saved to purchase dog toys for a local animal shelter. Make Saving Fun To a kid, putting money in a saving jar may be boring. But there are many banks and financial institutions out there that have special youth savings accounts that can help make saving fun. Some will have special sticker books to help kids see how much they’ve saved, others have special youth events or newsletters, and still others will provide financial incentives. For example, the Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) has a special Young Investors Club. In addition to receiving a small joining gift, kids receive birthday cards and newsletters. Young Investors can also complete a form to receive monetary rewards for good grades, and older investors can receive rewards for service work to the community (see their ad on page 14 for more information). These kinds of accounts can help create excitement for saving and visiting the financial institutions. When their state- ments come in the mail, praise your children for how much they’ve been able to save. Resist the Temptation to Interfere Your children won’t learn about money overnight; after all, we all struggle with spending, saving and giving on a daily basis. And you might be tempted to step in and dictate how their money is spent. But just because you know that a $20 stuffed animal is going to end up on the floor in a pile with other toys that hardly ever get touched, you still need to let them make their purchases. You can provide advice, but you can’t dictate how they spend their money. They’ll learn on their own about spend- ing wisely, but it’ll take some time. You’ll also need to resist the temp- tation to give them “credit” toward their purchases — $15 in the spending jar means they wait another week to purchase that stuffed animal, otherwise you’ll open up a jar of worms. Sources: DaveRamsey.com and Forbes.com ConcordiaPlans.org | Serve 13