A Father’s Role As Financial Coach
The country just celebrated Father’s Day on June 19th. As a father, a grandfather and a son, I am so deeply honored to pay tribute to my father for all the lessons he taught me about being financially responsible. I have passed the lessons I learned from my father on to my children, and they have passed it along to my grandchildren. In fact, as those who know me know, my family is dedicated to the business of helping other families and individuals achieve financial stability in order to live their best lives in retirement.
No matter how long I live, I will always consider financial responsibility to be one of the greatest gifts one can give to themselves and their loved ones. In our society, where we can study and work freely, financial responsibility is one of the easiest things to master. A little bit of discipline combined with a bit of understanding can lead to a life of comfort and financial well-being.
In honor of fathers everywhere, I offer the following tips to share with your children. You are the first financial advisor your children will have. Plant the seed early enough and your children will enjoy learning even more about becoming financially responsible. They may even like it so much that they make it their life’s work to help others do the same.
1. Enjoy today and save for tomorrow. Teach your children how to save and spend. Teach them that they can have fun by spending money, but that saving is an important aspect of making money and can be just as fun as spending. If they have a summer job, ask them to save half of their summer earnings to teach them the concept of saving for the future. They'll learn that adequate savings provides financial freedom and allows them to buy things they need and want without stress.
2. Work hard but don't forget what's important. Work and money go hand in hand. However, many adults assume money brings happiness, which is not necessarily true. Money can provide financial stability and the opportunity to enjoy many things in life, but it isn't everything. Encourage your teens to achieve an adequate income, but not to sacrifice their health or time with family in pursuit of material things. Reinforce that money can enhance their lives when managed correctly, but it isn't the sole key to happiness.
3. The Scout's motto: Be prepared. Dads take pride in helping their children learn how to be prepared for emergencies that can happen any day, like flat tires. The financially wise father also wants his children to be prepared in the event of any financial emergency. This includes teaching teens and young adults to establish an emergency fund to cover at least six months of living expenses. Talk to teens about the peace of mind that comes with being prepared for any financial emergency and help them determine ways they'll begin to build their own financial safety net.
Sharing your wisdom with your children is a great way to celebrate being a father any time of the year.