Help your child to start working towards Financial Freedom: Tips from MyLife and MoneyTime

Financial literacy is one of the most important life skills you can give your child. Mylife, in collaboration with MoneyTime SA, has a vision to create a Financially Independent South African Youth.

 Our aim is to help parents and educational leaders to teach our kids how to make good decisions with their money. What and how you teach your child about money depends on a lot of things, but it's essential that your child is equipped with the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to enter adulthood prepared to make good financial decisions.

The mountain is steeper for our children

There's no doubt about it. It's been harder for our generation to get ahead financially than it was for our parents, and it's going be even harder for our children. It is important that your child learns about earning, saving, borrowing, lending and investing to be able to get ahead in today's economy.

 We live in an age of instant gratification where we're able to access almost anything within a few clicks. Our children are more familiar with paying with plastic than using in cash where it's easier to get a sense of how much you're spending and what is left. Young adults have easy access to credit and the concept of borrowing to live beyond their means is largely accepted. All this can lead to bad spending habits, that results in student, personal and household debt.

 Take student loans for example. Student debt has ballooned to R16.5 billion (US$1bn), up from R14bn at the end of 2019, Linda Meyer, director for operations and sector support at Universities South Africa disclosed in March 2022. South Africans are now going into their 30s, 40s and sos with student loan debt they've not paid off.The question we have to ask ourselves is, have we done enough to equip our youth with the financial knowledge they need to make wise financial decisions or are we allowing them to learn by costly trial and error?

 We understand that financial freedom means different things for different people. For some people it may mean the ability to pay university fees for the first graduate in the family, for others it may mean paying off a long-standing family debt, or it may mean travelling to the coast to enjoy the sea for the very first time. No matter where you are on the journey towards obtaining your financial freedom, it's never too late to start.

 Here are some practical tips from Mylife and MoneyTime SA to explore with your child, and get your child interested in working towards financial freedom:

 Create a financial freedom vision board with your child

Ensure your child remains motivated to achieve their goals by creating a vision board that they can work towards. A financial vision board is a useful tool to help you clarify, concentrate and maintain focus on your goals. It is simply a collection of images, words, numbers and dates around a specific goal. Seeing this board every day will help you and your child to stay focused when the end seems nowhere in sight. This visual stimu­lation will keep you motivated to adopt healthier money habits, helping you and your child to stay on track and to achieve milestones.

 Help them set specific concrete goals

It's no fun saving if you don't know what you're saving for. Give your child a savings goal - such as a deposit for a toy or event, cool clothing or even luxuries. When deciding on a goal, consider how much they need to save, and by when. Concrete dates and amounts will help to motivate both of you. Give them chores around the house to earn extra pocket money, its a win-win for all.

 Reward your child

Don't forget to treat your child when they reach a savings milestone. This will help motivate them to keep putting any extra cash away when they can. In addition to focusing on the big goals, aim to also set smaller, short-term goals as these will reap quicker results and keep you both motivated. For example, saving money each week for a trip in six months time will keep you inspired to put the money away.

 Help your child to create a budget

A budget can help you accurately manage your money. By creating a budget, you can see exactly how much money is coming in and out of your accounts, how much debt you have and how you can make strides to reduce that debt. For many, figuring out how to live on a budget can be a steep learning curve. A budget helps you to see that you're spending RS00 a month on takeaways, and R100 a month on an online subscription you aren't even using. By knowing how much they spend on what, your child can optimise how they spend their pocket money every month and start to steadily grow their savings.

 Teach your child to use 'plastic money' with care

Credit and debit cards have become essential, especially when you take into account the increasing amount of online transactions. On the other hand, the average person spends more per transaction when using plastic. Paying with cash will make you think twice about making any purchases. Come into the habit of using cash when spending money with your child and let them do the math with you.

 Maximize voucher, loyalty and reward programs

Voucher and Reward Programmes like Mylife Lifestyle, can come in handy to stretch the rand. You can enjoy discounts on your monthly spending patterns. If you plan right, you can use your vouchers to pay for everyday living items and even some nice to have reward items. Visit www.mylifelifestyle.co.za for more. Teach your child to use these programs to their advantage.

 Get your child going on MoneyTime - let the games begin

Let us be intentional about freeing our children from the shackles of over indebtedness and a lack of knowl­edge around their finances. Now is the time to empower our youth with the knowledge to manage their finances and to ultimately grow their wealth for now and into the future. The MoneyTime SA financial educa­tion programme was created just for this purpose.

 MoneyTime includes a fun money management game as part of the course. Children are rewarded with virtual money within the game for answering questions correctly and can then decide how to spend it. They can shop at virtual stores, donate, or invest in further education and property that will increase their long-term wealth. In this way, MoneyTime teaches your kids how the consequences of their financial decisions work without the real-life pressure, risk, or fear of failure.

 MoneyTime lessons are only 30 minutes each and cover a wide range of money lessons including employment, job application, career choice, banking, property purchase, investing and business basics. Additional to the 30 student lessons, there are 13 parent child lessons. These are designed for students to complete with a parent or trusted adult. They are optional but highly recommended as they help to put learning into real life context.

 Lessons are combined with a fun money management game. The game lets children try out the strategies they've learnt in the program to grow and manage their money. Gift your child with financial literacy, one of the most important life skills you can give your child. Click here to learn more and subscribe.

Awards

 MoneyTime was awarded runner up for the Best Non-financial Services Company at the inaugural 2022 Money Inclusion and Awareness Awards (MAIA), in what judges considered was the most tightly contested category of the evening.

 MoneyTime is also proud to have won the Children's Education Program of the Year - Financial Responsibility & Decision Making award for 2022 presented by The Institute for Financial Literacy.

 For more information or to enroll your child or school today, contact us on

+27 72 118 3258 or rietha@moneytimekids.co.za