Buying second-hand items and donating can be a great way to teach kids the value of a dollar and that not everything needs to be new
We’ve heard a few times in our scholarship essays about the importance of saving, donating and good use of credit. These three money rules are great places to start in teaching your kids about money and what to do with it.
Today’s essay is by Kayla Rodgers, a student at Clearly University in Michigan. Her story is a great reminder that even families of limited means can teach their kids about money and saving. By getting kids involved in donating and buying used, you help them realize the real value of a dollar.
Check out Kayla’s story and please share on social media. The most-shared essay on how parents can teach their kids about money will win our $500 personal finance scholarship, announced August 31st!
Sharing our experience learning about saving and managing money is what PeerFinance101 is all about. Check out my own story of my first money blunder and how I learned to create a budget.
Teaching Value with Limited Means
My parents have been great role models throughout my life. My mom divorced my father when I was four years old; however, the man she remarried when I was ten became the dad I needed. Although my parents never forced me to pay for things, I knew I needed to step up and help. My parents have done well in giving me the tools I need to understand finances and be secure.
My parents are not rich my any means. My mom is an associate at Walmart and my dad works with press dyes at a factory; therefore, it became important for me to learn about money and how to save and help pay for necessities like groceries and personal expenses.
When I was little, my mom gave me a small allowance. I always had the urge to spend it as soon as I got it. She taught me that the money was not burning a hole in my pocket, and I had no need to spend it right away. At a young age, my mom taught me the meaning of savings; if I save my allowance, it will accumulate and I would eventually have enough to buy something bigger and more valuable.
My mom also taught me how it is okay to buy used and to engage in the donating process. Every year when I was little, my mom and I would go through my toys, and I would decide what toys I do not play with anymore, and they would donate to other children that would have a chance to play with it as I once did. The early exposure to donation and buying used has taught me to be grateful for the things I have and to be frugal buying the things I want, and I do not always need the latest and greatest. Being a little frugal with money has allowed me to save a little extra and to not spend heavily on items that could be bought at a cheaper price.
While in high school, my mom helped me apply for checks, encouraged me to get a debit card, and later on apply for credit cards. I was apprehensive to have debit and credit cards because I did not want to become financially irresponsible. My mom taught me that if I keep track of my checkbook and pay off the credit card as soon as the bill comes, there is no chance for debt to occur and I will be able to build credit. My mom was there through every step of the processes, which has helped me to be encouraged.
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Using Money Lessons to Pay for College
My mom and dad have always encouraged me to make my own decisions; however, sometimes they worry about me paying for school. They cannot afford my college expenses, so they are all on me. I do take out loans; however, I have learned to minimize them by learning about better personal finance techniques. Although they are unable to really help me with the college loans, their encouragement to do well in school and keep going has helped me to continue doing my best and moving forward.
I thank my mom every day for my success because without her, I would not have learned all that I have about money. She taught me to save early on, to write checks, to make a deposit at the bank, to get a debit card and change my pin, and to apply for a credit card.
I do not know where I would be if I did not have the knowledge from my mom and the encouragement from both of my parents to move forward and continue pursuing my goals. I know that they are proud of me for my accomplishments, but I am more so appreciative of them for giving me the tools I needed in life to succeed.
I want to thank Kayla for her essay on the importance of buying used and donating. Be sure to support Kayla by sharing the article through social media and check in August for the winner of the personal finance scholarship.
About the Author
Joseph Hogue is a financial expert and investment analyst. After serving in the Marine Corps, he started his career investing in real estate before becoming an investment analyst for some of the largest private investors. He's appeared on Bloomberg and on CNBC as an investment expert and has published ten books in personal finance. Now he helps investors reach their financial goals and invest in the stock market with some of the same advice he used when working for the rich.