By Delta Jones-Walker, Gary Crusader
Last month, I focused on Mother’s Day and giving mom stock as a gift. So, it is only fitting to focus on fathers as their special day approaches. Fathers can wear many hats from head of household and protector to breadwinner and fiscal guardian of the family. These roles are important and should be taken seriously especially since our children often watch and seek to emulate what we do.
Believe it or not, financial habits, good or bad, are traits that can be passed down from generation to generation. Fathers can play a significant role in how their children will one day pay bills, save, earn and invest. All of these practices can make or break a financial legacy. Here are a few steps that fathers (and mothers) can take to instill financial responsibility in their children and establish a legacy that can be passed down to future generations:
- Unfortunately, a little over half of American retirees plan to leave an inheritance for their children. This narrative can change when we commit to a retirement plan early in our careers, even before the children come along. Contribute as much as possible, and seek the advice of a financial advisor to ensure that you are reaping all the benefits of your employer’s plan.
- Establish a college fund once the decision is made to start a family. Making regular contributions to your child(ren)’s education lightens the financial burden when high school graduation approaches. Even if they choose another path, the capital will still be there (with interest) to invest in their dreams.
- Talk openly and candidly about money with your children. Money can be a delicate subject but should never be taboo in family discussions. Let the kids know how and why bills must be paid in a timely manner and the positive and negative impacts of credit. More important, teach them to avoid unnecessary debt accumulation.
- Encourage your children to save. As soon as they begin to count, introduce your little ones to the art of saving. Whether it’s a piggy bank, a savings account or an app, take consistent measures to help them see their wealth growing. If you make it routine and fun, they’re more likely to keep it going.
- Lead by example. Let your children see you practicing the above habits of saving, paying bills on time, making sensible purchases and establishing good credit. They are watching our every move, so let them catch us making wise financial choices.
Remember dads, no matter how much money you have, leaving a financial legacy is always possible. Happy Father’s Day from Atled Financial!
Connect with Delta Jones-Walker and Atled Financial on Facebook, Twitter: @Atled_Financial and LinkedIn! To schedule a complimentary consultation or a presentation to your group or organization, call 219-513-3710 or email email@example.com and mention this column. Topic ideas for this column are welcome!
*Securities and advisory services offered through Woodbury Financial Services, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC. Insurance services offered through Atled Financial Group 717 B Main Street Schererville, IN 46375 which is not affiliated with Woodbury Financial.