Saturday, May 21, 2005

Reality Store

A couple of middle schools in our local school district are wrapping up school-wide lessons on handling personal finances. Its about time schools get into this. Parents are horrible at teaching personal finance, and most parents don't know enough about it to be able to teach it anyway. I know that my dad always tried to teach us how to handle money well, but it was usually beyond the level we were at. It dealt with investing money, not the day-to-day handling of it. Fortunately I haven't made too many serious mistakes.

I met a few folks when I went back to school in the mid-90's who had already toasted their credit. One friend was told by her ex-boyfriend that no one would ever marry her because they wouldn't want to take on that level of debt. She had maxed out 11 credit cards by her junior year of college. The article I linked to earlier made the comment that a card with a $2,000 limit takes 16 years to pay off if a person makes the minimum payment and doesn't add any additional charges once they've maxed it. That $2,000 in purchasing power ends up costing $4,500 when its all said and done.

So, what ideas are out there for teaching our kids about proper money handling?

Originally posted at The Dad's Group