4 Stuff that I Have Completed to Teach The kids The Value Of Money

 4 Stuff that I Have Completed to Teach The kids The Value Of Money

In light from the recent “Crazy Rich Asians” fever, I began to consider notice of the rising trend of Young Instagram Celebrities from Rich Families. Their Instagram feeds are often an extravagant display of their extensive collection of luxury handbags, expensive shoes, sport cars, exotic holiday travels, and indulgence in five-star hotels and spa treatments.

With their Instagram followers numbering within the thousands and thousands, I shiver to consider that many of our children are 'inspired' by these lives of extravagance.

I have three teenage kids whom I have spent many years imparting proper financial values to. Now that they're in their teens, they are becoming financially-savvy by themselves, wise with money and independent.

In this article, I must tell fellow parents 4 personal finance education tips which i have practised alongside the kids to teach them about the worth of money.

# 1 Making Savings Fun And Competitive For My Children

Since these were at least a year old, I would give each of the kids a transparent money box, which are placed side-by-side. Everyday, after i returned home having a pocketful of coins that probably amounted to S$1 – S$2 of vary from my breakfast or lunch, I would yell excitedly to my kids “Savings Time!”, and they would dash towards me with outstretched palms, urging me to distribute the coins equally to three of these. They'd then drop the coins one at a time into the piggy banks and see their savings grow.

Interestingly, I would permit them to “withdraw” anywhere of the coins from the money box to purchase their ice-cream, or candies. They'd initially withdraw frivolously, but soon recognise that they'd miss out to their siblings who would have fuller piggy banks within the long-run.

Very quickly, they stopped withdrawing their savings from the piggy bank and competed aggressively against each other with whatever remained over from their allowance to top-up their piggy banks.

With this game, the seeds of thrift are sowed to their hearts.

# 2 Providing them A Fun Childhood That did not Cost Much

As a parent or gaurdian having a demanding time-table and work travel flight pattern, I'm often lured to buy beautiful clothes and high-end toys for my children to “compensate” in my absence from them.

That might have ruined their worth of thrift from young.

Instead, my kids' toys are often hand-me-downs, or second-hand purchases from Cash Converters and even in the now-defunct Sungei Road “Thieves Market”. Their childhood clothing is often “3 for S$10” from HDB estate “Pasar Malam” with their favourite Powerpuff Girls, Disney Princesses, Ben10 or Barney the Dinosaur prints.

Their favourite meals would be Roti Prata, Chicken Rice or Pancakes from Coffeeshops or Hawker Centres. Their overseas holiday season is often car journeys to Malaysia cities, experiencing the beach, wonderful local food, and playtime with yours truly.

The best gift you are able to provide your children is your some time and love, each of which do not cost much financially.

# 3 Inspiring These to Be Rich & Free

Many parents encourage their children to study and work hard to ensure that once they develop, they'd be able to afford the luxuries of life – a posh car, big house, branded bags and clothing, exotic holidays, etc.

Ironically, this could likely have the opposing effect, as their kids would grow up spending their hard-earned cash on these expensive purchases that will keep them from becoming rich.

I think the greatest happiness of being wealthy is freedom. So throughout my children's growing-up years, I made sure I was a role-model of hard work and frugality using the objective of being rich and free one day.

At 42, my children saw me stepping down from the corporate career and since then, having a life of entrepreneurship that I usually have wanted. I regularly encourage them to become financially free so that they will have the liberty to reside an existence that they are passionate about.

# 4 Training Up Their Financial Guts

I am a contrarian investor: I invest heavily once the stock market crashes, especially during the 2008 Global financial trouble, 2012 Europe Debt Crisis and 2021 China Stock Market Crash.

Whenever the stock exchange crashes, I'd spend considerable time sharing with my children to view market crashes as exciting “Get-Rich Opportunities” as I poured my savings into the stock market. Within the 2012 Euro debt crisis, on my small nudging, they started dabbling in buying shares themselves with their “Ang Pow” money they have saved through the years. Recently because the stock exchange crashed on the US-China trade war, they grew excited again and got ready using their savings to invest.

Their investment amounts are not sizeable, often requiring some top up from me so that you can purchase a decent lot of shares. The bottom line is to provide them some hands-on experience in capitalising on market crashes, more importantly, train their financial guts to be strong in times of crisis.

After many years of frugal upbringing, and also the imparting of right financial values, it gives me great comfort to see my kids becoming wise financially. Hopefully my parenting experience will inspire you to train your kids to be rich and free when they grow up!

Loo Cheng Chuan is a father of three and founder of the 1M65 movement. For more information about the 1M65 movement, you can watch our DollarsAndSense Tonight interview with him:

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