One of the things I’ve been running into a lot lately is balancing between the many new interests of
the kids and the expenses that come along with those new interests. They may suddenly be
interested in roller skating; that usually leads to unexpected expenses in safety gear and roller
skates. This is a problem that many families face, especially since children love to explore new
The solution to this problem is surprisingly simple. Teaching the kids about money and how to make
wise purchase decisions actually helps ease the burden a lot. Children can benefit so much from the
lessons too, especially as they grow older and become more aware about money.
One of the things to focus on when you’re trying to help the kids understand more about wise
purchase decisions, is getting them familiar with money itself. Kids don’t really pay attention to
expenses and money around them because parents tend to shield them from the decision-making
Getting them involved with money early is a good way of helping them learn about managing
finances. Let’s say a child broke an appliance that costs $200 to fix. Use the circumstance to teach the
child how to be responsible with money.
You can ask your child to take responsibility of a portion of that repair cost. You can then make a
deal to freeze some of the child’s allowance to make up for that portion. The process isn’t always
easy to handle, but it is an important lesson that is best learnt at 10 rather than when the child is
Get Them Involved
Another way to get children used to making good decisions, especially when it comes to money, is
getting them involved in the process. Using my kids’ newfound love for roller skating as an example,
I sat down with them as I went through reviews on sites like Consumer Charts.
They get to analyze details about the different kits available and learn the prices of those kits. We
compared products and decided on a kit that suits beginners. Since price was an important factor,
children become more aware about the importance of managing expenses in a more natural way.
It is a good exercise in other circumstances too. The next time you’re planning a family holiday, get
the kids involved in the decision-making process and let them learn more about the costs involved.
One last piece of the puzzle is searching for alternatives. Is buying new things the only way they can
get into the new interest or hobby? Are there other alternatives worth exploring? In the case of
roller skating, we found a skating rink that also rents out roller skates and safety equipment.
It didn’t take long for the kids to decide that a couple of visits to the rink is a good way to dip their
toes into roller skating. At this point, I knew that the learning process was working. You too can help
your children become better at making purchase decisions and managing their expenses. It is a skill
that is best mastered early.