What Your Kids Really Need To Know To Survive As Adults!

The following is a guest post written by Gregg Murset, creator of BusyKid

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What Your Kids Really Need To Know To Survive As Adults!

Let’s take a journey back to your high school or college days. Remember when you’d be low on cash to have fun with your friends or you’d be taking another loan out to pay for the upcoming semester? As students you probably never really sweat it since you’d either hit up your parents or lean on a credit card. You’d also probably flash forward in your mind to how life will be so much better once you land that full-time position and make serious money.

Oh those were the days, right?  The only problem then (and now) was that too many high school and college students are really living day-to-day, beyond their means and amounting debt that will take years to overcome, if it could be overcome at all.

Right now you might be saying … “Heck, everyone has the same problem, so what’s the big deal”. Well it’s a big deal because the extra financial burden has many young Americans stressed and less productive. Matter of fact, according to a report from Bank of America and Merrill Lynch Workplace Benefits, 67% of millennials say financial stress overtakes their ability to focus and be productive at work and school. This is more than twice as likely than baby boomers — 32% of whom worry about the same thing.

“Traditionally college graduation marks the end of one journey and the beginning of another,” says BusyKid CEO & Certified Financial Planner Gregg Murset. “However these days, the start of the journey into the “real world” comes with a lot more financial worries. These young adults have been set up to fail thanks to a lack of financial education, direct marketing by credit card companies and student loans.”

Upon graduation, many young adults are hit with a wall of personal finance dilemmas. Some will need to pay rent, find a job, pay off student debt (the average student loan debt at graduation in 2016 was $37,132), and most of them will have no idea where to start because they’ve never been taught.

So parents, here are some things you can do or teach your kids before they graduate. Sure, they will still make mistakes or bad choices, but heck, no one is perfect. You can teach someone to ride a bike but they still might crash, right? Use the suggestions below this as your guide and there’s an excellent chance your children won’t be living with you when he/she turn 30.

Don’t Count On Your High School … Right now in the US the majority of high school graduates never take a single class on personal finance or economics. Without the basic understanding of financial terms and practices, your children will be totally unprepared. If your school doesn’t teach a minimum of one year on basic finance, it’s up to you to give your kids the tools they will need. Thank goodness for the Internet (and BusyKid)!

Modern Money … Yes, dollars and cents are still used, but not as much as you think. It’s estimated that less than 10% of the currency in the world is actually paper or coins. This means your children need to know how to manage “invisible money”, including paying bills and ensuring bank accounts don’t hit zero. Stop writing checks and use online services while your kids are young enough to do it with you and can learn by example.

Saving Money … Seems simple but 39% of Americans admit to having zero in a savings account. 57% say they have less than $1000 in a savings account. Teach your children to take a portion of any money they get (birthday, holiday, babysitting, mowing grass, etc.) and place it in a savings account. As a rule, 50% should go to savings. (40% to spend and 10% to share.)

Investing … If your children ever want to retire, they will need to invest money somewhere along the way. Lucky for them there are plenty of resources available to teach them how, including some fantasy investing games which would allow them the chance to invest pretend money. With BusyKid they can invest a small portion of their weekly allowance. Practice makes perfect … or at least better educated.

Credit Cards … As soon as your children hit a certain age, they will be bombarded with marketing materials from credit card companies. So be ready! If you want your children to have a card, make sure you sign up for spending notifications or that it’s only used for emergencies. Make sure to pick a card with a low annual percentage rate and it is paid off each month. This can be dangerous territory, so if there’s one place to be overprotective as a parent, it’s here.

Student Loans … Designed to help students get to college with the promise of paying them back later, student loans can serve a great purpose. The problem has become, everyone has the best intentions to pay them back, but something goes terribly wrong. Currently U.S. student loan debt is $1.5 trillion and nearly 9 million loans are in default. Have your children follow this simple rule – don’t borrow more than they would earn in their first year out of school. In other words, if your child is going to make $24,000 as a first-year teacher (about $20,000 after taxes), don’t take $50,000 in loans.

Compound Interest … Compound interest is when a bank pays interest on both the principal (the original amount of money) and the interest an account has already earned. As an example, if you put $1000 in the bank with compound interest of 10%, in 20 years the $1,000 would be more than $7,000. Without compound interest, it would be $3,000.

Overwhelming? It certainly can be but any disaster can be avoided. You still have time. Maybe you had all the answers when you graduated high school or college, but if not, help your kids learn from your mistakes. Listen, if you knew your child was going to fly a plane a few months after graduating high school, wouldn’t you make sure he/she knew everything there was to know to avoid a crash? Well, a financial crash may not be a painful but it can be just as devastating.

By Gregg Murset, creator of BusyKid

 

Image Source: Pixabay

Book Review: Flourish Financially: Values, Transitions, & Big Conversations by Kathy Longo CFP®

Flourish Financially: Values, Transitions, & Big Conversations by Kathy Longo CFP®

By now readers of our How to Manage Your Monkey blog know we read and review hundreds of books on personal finance and financial planning. We would have to say that Flourish Financially: Values, Transitions, & Big Conversations by Kathy Longo CFP® is a very different book on the subject.

Whereas most books focus on the nuts and bolts, the undercarriage of your financial condition, this book is focused more on the person and their loved ones and not so much on the portfolio per se.

In this book, readers are treated to ideas about how to open up a dialogue with those involved in the financial planning and find out who they are and why they make financial decisions the way that they do.

You won’t be hammered in the head with such things as how to balance your portfolio.  Why should the author do this when she points out that every person is different and their needs and comfort levels with different investments must be considered?

Longo discusses how to teach children about finances at an early age, how to open conversations with adult children regarding the parents’ finances, and how those adult children should open a dialog with their parents before there is a crisis regarding key financial decisions, where the important papers are, what types of insurance are in place, and medical care decisions.

Our only problem when Longo discusses a spending plan, AKA budget, is that she does not mention tithe.  Giving to charity is completely different than paying a tithe. A tithe is ten percent of your gross income, given first.  It should be paid to your home church and only there.

The author does discuss giving and does a good job explaining different ways to give.

We really think that every adult should read Flourish Financially.  You will want to give a copy of this to your parents and adult children.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Guest Post: Santa Warns Kids to Start Doing Chores

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Santa Warns Kids to Start Doing Chores

Tis the season for helping out at home and sharing with people in need

Getting kids to clean their rooms and do other chores around the house is usually a constant battle for parents. But, very soon kids will be hard at work writing letters and making lists of the toys and games they hope to receive for Christmas creating the perfect opportunity for parents to re-motivate their kids.

Santa and his elves will be watching to make sure those chores are getting done and that valuable lessons are being learned as well. For parents with a busy holiday schedule, follow these simple tips to get kids to help more around the house and keep them motivated year-round because Santa is always watching.

Make Like an Elf – It might be hard for kids to understand the concept of a job so put it in holiday terms. Santa and the elves are working hard to make the toys and games, so kids need to work hard to earn them. Treat their chores as their first job and an opportunity to start teaching them about spending, saving, donating and investing.

Divide Up Hosting Housework – Assign your children tasks that match their ages and skill sets to get the house ready for holiday guests. Make sure to give them a deadline to help teach time management and keep them focused. Pay them for the work they do and suggest they use the money to pay for small gifts for a family gift exchange.

Shovel Up the Savings – Broaden the concept of a “first job” for older kids by having them do chores for neighbors. You can either pay your kids for raking leaves and shoveling snow or talk to your neighbors about hiring your kids for a small amount. Have your kids put the money into savings and use this as an opportunity to teach them about the different types of interest that can be earned through savings accounts.

Spread Cheer – Going out of the way to help others during the holidays is in the spirit of the season. To teach kids the importance of helping others and make them feel like they are making a difference have them use part of their earnings from doing chores for a charitable donation or to buy gifts and food for families in need.

Stuff Stockings with Stocks – If you want your kids to help out with chores all year, not just during the holidays, give them a reason to be motivated. Adults work for a paycheck and kids will too, especially if their money starts growing in the stock market.

Gregg Murset, CEO BusyKid

The co-founder & CEO of BusyKid, Gregg is best known as the groundbreaking inventor of My Job Chart which grew to nearly 1 million members in four years. Gregg is a father of six and a certified financial planner and consultant who also became a leading advocate for sound parenting, child accountability and financial literacy.

Book Review: Book Review: Master Your Business Cash Flow: Grow the Company You Love, Live the Life You Want Now by Albert J. Zdenek

Book Review: Master Your Business Cash Flow: Grow the Company You Love, Live the Life You Want Now by Albert J. Zdenek

Cash is king! Anyone who owns a business, or is learning about business, is taught that early in their education.

In his new book, Master Your Business Cash Flow: Grow the Company You Love, Live the Life You Want Now, Albert J. Zdenek gives business owners a few more tools for their toolbox.

It is unlikely that Zdenek and I will ever see eye to eye when it comes to debt. However, one must realize that his company is valued in the millions, whereas the company my wife Suzanne and I have has a net worth of negative 205.80. Yes, we managed to reach that level with a grand total of 34¢ in revenue.

All joking aside, Zdenek makes a very good case for using debt to finance your business. It does make sense to use other people’s money whenever you can to finance your business.

Having once worked as a collection agent, it is hard for me to understand that there are people who are backed up about asking people for the money they owe their company.

We give Master Your Business Cash Flow all five stars and a pumpkin spice latte. We think you will, too.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: The Bank On Yourself Revolution: Fire Your Banker, Bypass Wall Street, and Take Control of Your Own Financial Future by Pamela Yellen

The Bank On Yourself Revolution: Fire Your Banker, Bypass Wall Street, and Take Control of Your Own Financial Future by Pamela Yellen

Anyone who has read our How To Manage Your Monkey blog knows when we review a book on finance, we try to be as fair and balanced with our review as possible.

By now our readers also know that when we find something wrong with a concept, we tell you. We have looked all the way through The Bank On Yourself Revolution: Fire Your Banker, Bypass Wall Street, and Take Control of Your Own Financial Future by Pamela Yellen and we have to tell you we did find one flaw. On page 95 when the author is discussing the alternatives to using The Bank On Yourself method, she says we could face a future where we say, “And would you like fries with that?” The flaw is, the training tells you to say, “You want fries with that” with the tone of a question. It is actually hypnotism at its best. And, it works.

Well, now that you have read that major flaw (said tongue in cheek) we will tell you that this plan just might work.

Like just about every other book on personal finance we have read, Yellen starts out by telling her readers the flaw in most other means of financing a retirement. That part of the book seems to go a little slow. Don’t give up. The book gets much better and the plan really seems to be a good one.

Albert J. Zdenek Jr, author of Master Your Cash Flow: The Key To Grow And Retain Wealth gives us some very sound advice that one should remember when reading any financial plan and that is, “Do the Math.”

It is too late for us to do the math. I was forced to retire 22 years ago. If I had The Bank On Yourself Revolution and not been too hard-headed to heed the advice given, we would not be having to try to make ends meet by eating beans and rice or ramen soup quite so often. Had we known about this plan and followed it the times spent in the nursing home (because that is the only way Medicare would pay for my IV fluids) could have been spent in my own home with visits from home health. With The Bank On Yourself Revolution, my wife and I could have made the choice.

We give The Bank On Yourself Revolution all five stars. It is very well-written and a well thought out plan for maximizing your wealth. We think anyone who plans to retire in this century needs to read this book. You will be glad you did.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

Guest Post: Questions to ask before you commit your money

Questions to ask before you commit your money 

“I’ve spent 25 years investigating over 450 financial products and vehicles,” Pamela says. “I can tell you that, though these products were sparkly and seductive on paper, 99.9% of them didn’t stand up to scrutiny.”

To protect your family’s financial future, you need to get answers to at least a few basic questions before you (and your money) jump in:

  1. What is this product’s true track record over the long run? “Get performance figures verified by a third party, not claims in sales literature from sales literature.”
  2. What guarantees does this product or vehicle offer? “If the answer is ‘None,’ run for the hills – unless you’re a thrill-seeker who’s prepared to lose his or her shirt.”
  3. What fees are involved? “Even seemingly nominal fees can eat up much of your account value. According to the Department of Labor, fees of only 1% will devour 28% of your nest egg over 35 years, assuming a 7% annual return. But most people are paying more than 1% in fees in their 401(k)s, IRAs, and so on. The key is not to underestimate the long-term impact of fees, and to make sure you are aware of all fees you’re being charged.”
  4. Who is recommending this to you? “Does your advisor have some vested interest in getting you involved in certain financial products? (And if so, did she disclose it up front?) Even if you’re dealing with someone who is financially savvy, do they really know your particular needs and situation well enough to be advising you?”

“To protect yourself and your family, I urge you to do your own due diligence before jumping on the bandwagon of any financial vehicle or product,” Pamela says. She also recommends asking these overarching questions when considering any financial product or advice:

  • Will this advice or vehicle give me peace of mind and let me sleep at night?
  • Will it help me get where I want to go without taking unnecessary risk?
  • Will it allow me to be in charge of my money?

Pamela shares a time-tested saving strategy that allows people to answer yes to those three all-important questions. This method, known as Bank On Yourself, provides guaranteed growth, pays taxes in advance, and gives people access to their savings without restrictions or penalties whenever they need it. Most importantly, it allows people to know exactly how much money they will have upon retirement and every step of the way.

About the Author: Pamela Yellen is founder of Bank On Yourself, a financial investigator and the author of two New York Times best-selling books, including her latest, The Bank On Yourself Revolution: Fire Your Banker, Bypass Wall Street, and Take Control of Your Own Financial Future. Pamela investigated more than 450 financial strategies seeking an alternative to the risk and volatility of stocks and other investments, which led her to a time-tested, predictable method of growing wealth now used by more than 500,000 Americans.

For more information, visit www.BankOnYourself.com.

Book Review: 5 Day Weekend: Freedom to Make Your Life and Work Rich with Purpose by Nik Halik and Garrett B. Gunderson

5 Day Weekend: Freedom to Make Your Life and Work Rich with Purpose by Nik Halik and Garrett B. Gunderson

This 320 page book is more like a course in life management than any we have seen.

If you take Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover, stir in a little of Norman Vincent Peale’s Power of Positive Thinking, add a pinch of The Autobiography of Ben Franklin, and then top it with The Millionaire Next Door, you have the recipe for 5 Day Weekend.


5 Day Weekend: Freedom to Make Your Life and Work Rich with Purpose by Nik Halik and Garrett B. Gunderson takes your typical book on money management and stands it on its ear.

In these pages one will find tons of ideas about how to make more money through active methods so that one can then make more money passively. This is one of those books you wish you had read when you were younger.

Nik Halik has an engaging writing style that makes the book very readable and enjoyable and, if you aren’t careful, you just might learn something. We give it all five stars.

You may be thinking that 5 Day Weekend is just another book on finance; you would be wrong. Instead, it is about living the life you want to lead. Readers learn about goal setting, planning, budgeting, and more.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.