Family Finances can be Tricky: 5 Great Ways to Get the Entire Family Involved in Saving
In order for a family to reach its financial goals, every member must be saving adequately. This can be tough since each person may have different approaches to money and younger people often don’t see the importance of putting money aside. However, if the entire family is taught the importance of saving, it becomes much easier to save for major purchases or a rainy day.
Practices like running up credit card bills or taking out personal loans online can affect the entire household. It is important for each member to be reminded of how interest rates can lead to financial ruin. Stress that online loans should only be used in serious cases of emergency and that they shouldn’t be used as long-term strategies. If these loans aren’t paid on time, high fees compound an already high interest rate.
Here are five ways to get the entire family in the habit of saving so there is no temptation to make risky financial decisions.
Have a family piggy bank
Instead of each member of the family keeping their loose change separately, let everyone chip into a pool. Kids may be more likely to drop their extra pocket money into a transparent container where they can watch the money grow. Adults can offer to match whatever the children contribute. Once the piggy bank is full, have a conversation about how the money should be spent.
Tie saving to a particular goal
Another way to show children the practicality of saving is to align it with a goal. Vacations usually get everyone excited so perhaps you can get everyone to make sacrifices and contribute to a travel fund. Set small targets and find a way to visibly check off each goal when it is reached. When the children ask for ice cream or new toy, ask whether they would rather have that or save the money for the big trip. This will teach them about sacrificing immediate needs for longer-term goals.
Plan meals in advance
Food is one of the major expenses in most families. When meals aren’t planned out, impromptu trips for fast food become the order of the day. You end up spending more money even though you have groceries at home. Planning ahead and even prepping some parts of the meal means there’s no stress involved in preparing dinner and no unnecessary splurges.
Never shop without a list
This is another way to prevent unplanned purchases. Try to make one major visit to the store where you purchase all your needed items and only those that are on the list. Making multiple trips or just grabbing whatever you see will often lead to over-spending. You also waste money on fuel driving to and from the store.
Use reusable Items
Disposable paper and plastic products are convenient and cheap in the short term but of course, you have to keep buying more. Invest in items that you can use multiple times so you can save money in the long-term. Swap paper towels for reusable cloths and instead of buying bottles of water, get a filter and an aluminium bottle so you can use tap water.
These are just a few of the ways most families can do a better job of saving. Examine your unique circumstances and see what else you can add to the list.