Funding Your Future: The Importance of Financial Literacy

Throughout the country, many schools don't require any kind of personal finance class. This means countless students will enter the real world with a very basic knowledge about how finances work. Regardless if your student gets a financial literacy class or not, David Sant with Cyprus Credit Union gives us a few things to cover with them before they head out on their own.

Create and Follow a Budget
One of the most important things you can do for your financial wellbeing is to create a budget. Help your kids start a budget and teach them how to follow it. If your kids are given an allowance help them understand how to use their money. Set aside a portion to save, and tell them the rest is to do as they please.
By giving your kids freedom with their money, they can learn through their own experiences the good and bad habits of money management.

Build and Control Credit
If you can teach your kids the best ways to build credit early, you will set them up for success. Credit has an influence on buying a car, getting an apartment or even getting a job. A great way to build credit is to get a low-limit credit card to use and pay back each month.

Too often we see people trapped in credit card debt and they are trapped in a cycle of trying to pay back the money. If you can teach your kids good habits of using a credit card you can help them avoid unnecessary debt in the future.

Keep it Simple
Financial literacy can be a pretty heavy topic to discuss with your kids. Try to make your discussions simple and easy for your kids to follow. Teach by example and explain the things that you do to make sure you stick to your budget.

Follow-Up
Every so often, take a minute to touch base with your kids to check up and see how they are doing with their money management. If they aren`t doing great, let them know and help them get back at it.

If your kids are taking a personal finance class, ask them about the things they are learning and expand on the topics they might be a little confused on. Having multiple points of view will help your kids learn the best course of action when it comes to their financial future. Reinforce what teachers are saying in their classes at school.

Teacher of the Month
Every school year, Fox13 and Cyprus Credit Union partner to recognize the hard-working teachers in our state. The teachers are nominated by parents and a teacher is chosen each month during the school year beginning in September. The winning teachers are given $1000; $500 to spend on themselves and $500 to spend on their classroom. To nominate a teacher, visit www.fox13.com or www.cyprus.com.

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