Wednesday, September 14, 2011
The Safe Spend program is a valuable resource for providing parents with tools and tips to teach their teens about responsible spending. Launched by American Express, along with financial expert Jean Chatzky and Mom Central’s Stacy DeBroff, this program is designed to help parents teach their kids how to “Practice Safe Spend” before leaving for college or an independent life. The following tips can help make discussing the importance of money management with your teen a little easier:
• Protect yourself from a budget blowout: There are college expenses you plan for -- food on the meal plan, books -- and then there’s everything else. Laundry, late night pizza and other extras add up fast. Decide how much your teen will have for these variables, tell him to track all spending, and then check back in a month to see how it’s working out.
• Understand that no means no: It happens to parents, too -- paying for a killer outfit or electronic gadget with a credit or charge card, only to feel the delayed sticker shock at month’s end. Before your college student arrives on campus, talk about the types of spending temptations they may experience and should avoid while at school.
If you’ve got teenagers at home, don’t assume that they learned good financial habits and skills in school. Take the initiative to teach them about sound money management. To aid in these types of discussions, you can find more helpful “Practice Safe Spend” tips at financialtools.americanexpress.com.
DISCLOSURE: I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of American Express and received a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.