The key to financial independence is education, and children who are never taught the importance of saving are unlikely to practice fiscal responsibility once they’re old enough to hold down jobs and take out credit cards. Agent Piggy is a web-based program that parents can use to teach their children how to manage money and avoid unnecessary debt.
Rather than telling your kids the importance of budgeting and saving, you can show them the importance by signing up for an Agent Piggy account. Both you and your child will get a login, and your child will be asked to enter some information about his or her financial goals. A common goal might be to save up for a skateboard ($35) or a new tablet ($300). Enter various tasks or “challenges” that your child can complete to earn money toward his goals. Each time your child completes a task – such as doing the dishes or making dinner, for example – the money he earned gets deposited into his Agent Piggy account. When he earns enough money to reach his goal, he’s ready to cash in and purchase whatever item he was saving up for.
In addition to teaching children about budgeting and saving, Agent Piggy also provides the tools for understanding donating, investing, and debt management. Children can sign up to donate a portion of all their earnings to their favorite charities, and they can “borrow” money from Mom or Dad to repay at a later date. For parents who are interested in giving their children a financial education, Agent Piggy is an excellent tool that relies more on showing than telling.
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