Monday, September 10, 2007

Somewhat Shocking Short

Just in case you're wondering how important it is to teach your kids about the value of money, please watch this New York Times Magazine short, "Kids + Money," by Lauren Greenfield. It's so important that we as parents demystify money and help our children to understand that it in no way should define them (or us). Doing so is obviously not an easy task (we're in the process ourselves and have not hit the truly difficult life stages with our kids yet), but I am so glad that my wife and I have made money education a cornerstone of our childrens' lives.


Thursday, September 06, 2007

A Dollar a Day from the Money Mammal's Mommy

I have a very special special guest blogger today, my wife and "Money Mammal" executive producer, Eileen Lanza. Eileen inspired me to really get my money act together after being something less than money-savvy in my 20's. Her advice is simple and effective. Listen to her. I do.

A dollar a day?

So, I am a Money Mammal, right? And a Money Mammal Mommy, too! Because I sell Real Estate (in Los Angeles), I have decided to put $1 a day away for each of my children starting at birth to go towards a down payment for their first home. Since I just thought of this, I have some catching up to do; my girls are 2 & 4. I decided to buy in to a mutual fund and keep it in my name until they are old enough & wise enough to purchase their own homes. I looked for a no-load mutual fund with a low minimum and purchased shares of American Century LiveStrong 2035 online.

I have always funded my 401ks, IRAs and the girls 529 plans and I have never missed a single dollar. It is very satisfying getting the statements in the mail and seeing how much money I have socked away. Can you imagine how much money they will have in 20 years? All because I saved $2 a day!? C’mon & join me! Your kids will thank you in 20 years...and they won’t live with you until they are 35!


Sunday, September 02, 2007

Put It In Writing?

Memorialize your child's commitment to learn the value of money by putting it in writing - or at least make it visual in some way. Just as you should write your own goals down to "train" your brain to follow your direction, writing or memorializing your child's commitment is something to strongly consider if you want to begin their lifelong commitment to money smarts. If you want some help (and an easy way to start), you can print a free copy of a Money Mammals certificate for your kids to help them to commit to share, save and spend smart (Click Here to download certificate). Or have your child make his own certificate. Or simply write something on a piece of paper that you refer to on a continuous basis. I personally like the idea of a certificate because it carries more weight - and it goes on a wall for easy reference. Another idea (or a complimentary idea) might be a wristband so that you can refer to it when you are out the house and out of range of the certificate. As always, good luck and always remember to Share & Save & Spend Smart Too.