As a parent, I am thrilled that my children are getting involved in the world of finance and planning their financial futures at such a young age. When I was their age I never worried about finance. I always considered finance to be tomorrow’s problem. Something that I’ll tackle when I am an adult. Finance is a funny subject though. The longer you wait to get involved in your financial freedom, the harder it is to achieve.
My kids talk to me about TFSAs, RRSPs, stocks, index funds, mutual funds, and ROI. They are wizards at such a young age. Talking to them always makes me want to take a time machine back to when I was their age and get deeply involved in my finances.
Well into my twenties I played fast and loose with my money. I had no budget. I didn’t believe in saving a portion of my paycheck, and I thought investing in stocks and bonds was reserved for Wall Street suits. Most of my money was piled in a simple checking account that paid no interest. I was working hard for my money, but my money was not working hard for me.
As an adult, retirement is in my distant future and I can’t help but wonder how much closer it would be if I started saving earlier. I wish I knew about the power of compound interest and it’s magical ability to grow savings. Opening a simple savings account and contributing a percentage of every paycheck would’ve brought me closer to my goals. Vacations, a car, a house, luxuries I thought I would have to wait for were all achievable at a young age, but I was not financially involved.
In my mid-thirties, I finally took an interest in the stock market. But I was just an average joe following the rest of the herd. I relied on emotions instead of reason and that got me in trouble. Instead of dumping my savings into hot stocks to make fast money, I should’ve invested in a range of stocks and bonds to grow my investments and plan my future.
Today I’m well invested. I have a diverse portfolio of stocks, mutual funds, and RRSPs. I’m consistently rewarded with a high rate of return on my investments. However, all this came after making many mistakes and waiting too long to get involved in my finances. My kids skipped over all my financial troubles and lack of interest. Their finances are performing just as well as mine. And at such a young age, their financial future is brighter than mine ever was.
This is why it is important to teach financial literacy to all kids at a young age. This is why I value financial literacy programs like those offered through ExplorerHop, which equip kids with skills and knowledge to confidently manage their money. They’ll learn to save, budget, and invest in a safe and engaging environment. These are all real-life skills they will use in their adult-lives. And when their finances are in order and they’ve reached all their goals, then they will have freedom. And that’s what I want for my kids.
-Guest Post from Amy, a proud Explorer Hop parent.
Amy's children participated in Explorer Hop's Camp Millionaire Program.