5 tips for talking to teens about money and work
As teens grow, their desire for financial independence is likely to grow too. So it’s a good time to talk about smart ways to manage money, especially if they’re earning pocket money or income from a part-time job.
Here’s a few simple tips for talking to your teen about managing work and money.
1. Understanding the importance of pocket money
One simple step to teaching teens about the relationship between work and income is to give them pocket money for chores they’ve completed. This foundation will set the stage for them to appreciate the value of earning money.
Teen talk tip: Discuss with your teen how their pocket money is connected to responsibilities, such as any chores they complete around the home.
2. Exploring the potential of part-time work
If your teen outgrows pocket money, you might also encourage them to think about getting a part-time job. It could be an opportunity for them to learn new skills and experience real-world responsibilities.
Part-time job idea: learning by teaching
If your teen’s unsure where to start, tutoring younger kids could be a potential job. It not only helps them earn money but can also help reinforce their own knowledge too.
3. Balancing work-life responsibilities
When discussing part-time work with your teen, you might want to help them understand the importance of balancing their other commitments like school, home and personal. While part-time work can provide valuable experience, it should never come at the expense of their education and wellbeing.
Teen talk tip: Make a time to sit down with your teen to work and agree the priorities for schoolwork, extracurricular activities and part-time employment.
4. Setting up solid financial foundations
As your teen ventures into part-time work, they’ll need to set up certain financial foundations. Here are a few key things they’ll probably need to get.
- Tax file number. Providing a tax file number (TFN) to the employer ensures the correct tax is deducted from your teen’s earnings. For more, visit ato.gov.au/Individuals/Tax-file-number
- Superannuation account. If your teen’s under 18 and working more than 30 hours a week they’re generally entitled to super and will need a super account and TFN. For more, visit fairwork.gov.au/pay-and-wages/tax-and-superannuation
- Bank account. Your teen will also need a bank account to receive their earnings, you could look for an account that best suits your child’s needs. Remember to review the fees and features that encourage responsible spending and saving.
Teen talk tip: Organising these financial foundations can be tricky. You’ll need to explain why these things are necessary and you can even involve them in the decision making process. Taking the time to explain the pros and cons of different accounts will help with their future understanding and ultimately land on a solution that best fits them.
5. Guiding your teen through the process
As a parent you’ve been there done that, so your support’s crucial for helping your teen learn smart money skills that will serve them well into adulthood.
Teen talk tip: Always be open to answering questions, offering advice and providing encouragement as your teen finds their financial feet. Making your teen a part of the decision making process is a sure fire way to get them thinking about the many options available to them and how each option suits their needs.
This article does not constitute financial product advice or tax advice. You should seek independent financial or taxation advice where appropriate.
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