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Steve and Annette Economides of America’s Cheapest Family have written a new book to help parents teach their children about the value of money and "financial independence." In The Money Smart family system they teach you the money system that they have been using in their family.
Teaching children about money, in today’s society, can be extremely hard. All children see are ads for the next new, big, thing. When they are in school all they are seeing are other children with the newest tech object or greatest toy. Children are not being taught that it takes money to get something and to get that money it takes work. Most parents are just handing their children whatever they want because they can.
Well, the Economides feel like children should earn what they get by being giving wages (just like adults) and have to work for their wages. So, they set up a points system instead of a time card. Their children are expected to work towards earning 4 point each day under the categories of: Morning Point, School Point, Chore Point, and Round-up point. At the end of the week their children’s points were added up and they were paid a certain amount for each one. Obviously, the older the child, the more the point was worth.
After being paid their children were then expected to divide their wages into different folders which taught them to save money, donate money and have some to spend. All basic concepts that we as adults know but, if we don’t teach our children then they will have no idea.
As the children get older they are taught more monetary responsibility by getting part time jobs. At that time they are responsible for their own clothes, car insurance, any extra “luxury” items they want, and more. There are some things that they felt that parents should be responsible for buy at this age but, only necessities. Items such as haircuts, medical expenses, and school portraits should be paid for by the parents. Items such as cosmetics, class rings, and cosmetic surgery are the child’s responsibility.
Overall this was a good book and got me thinking about a few things that I might want to implement when it comes to teaching my children about money but, most of it is common sense. There are tons of diagrams and forms throughout the book which helps to illustrate their points. They have a great system and I feel that it will benefit parents to take a look at their system. The only problems I had with the book is since they wrote it as a team the narration is a little confusing sometimes. I would be reading and think that it was Steve talking but, instead it was actually Annette. I would have loved to have a little more clarification as to who was talking.
The other problem or con I had was that they kept referring the reader back to their website and directing you there so that you could buy something from them. I felt like they were trying to sell you something the whole time I was reading. It felt kind of like an infomercial.
I recommend this book as a basic starter book for teaching children about money. Like I said before, it’s full of common sense information. The book can help you work towards teaching your children to be financially independent.
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255