At this point in life, you know that money doesn’t grow on trees.  After all, you have probably heard your parents tell you that numerous times during your life.

But, did you ever have a real, honest conversation about money with your parents?  In most households, there are not open discussions about money and household finances, at least between parents and children.  However, parents, family members and trustworthy adults  are great sources to learn about finances.  

Below are some questions to start a quick conversation with an adult and learn about financial responsibility in the process:

  • How old were you when you started working and what was the reason?

It may not be a surprise to find out someone started working because they needed money.  But, what you may find interesting is what they needed the money for.  Some may have wanted to buy the latest fads, another may have been saving for college, while another had to contribute to their household bills to keep from losing their home.

  • How much money did you have saved at my age?

There will be a huge difference of what someone has saved depending on what their priorities were.  For those that wanted to buy the latest fad or had to help out with their family’s expenses, chances are they were not able to save a lot of money.  While the person saving for college may have saved a fair amount, they probably did not have much left over once they graduated from college.  

  • What are some mistakes you made with money?  What were some accomplishments?

Saving money isn’t always as easy as it seems.  There are always mistakes made along the way.  Some mistakes you can recover from quickly.  Others you may never recover from.   But, also there are many triumphs that come from saving.  You may find that a relative was able to invest their money and have great returns, buy a house, or buy their dream car.  No matter what the mistakes or triumphs may be, make sure that you learn from them.

  • What’s the smartest way to make money?

Don’t let this question fool you or the adult you are asking.  The smart way, may not be the fast way.  There are many different things that come into play when making money.  You need to be smart with it.  Do not take short cuts, such as gambling or lotteries.  These choices can make your hard-earned money disappear in a matter of minutes.  

At the end of the day, it is most important to remember that money does not always come with luck.  Sure, there are people that win the lotto or are born into wealth.  But, they are in the minority.  The rest of us have to work hard and earn the things we need and want.  

The following quote from Colin Powell, 65th United States Secretary of State, sums it up.  “There are no secrets to success.  It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.”

Heather Wick Alpine Bank Bfit Teens RockfordBy, Heather Wick, Marketing & Communications Specialist, Alpine Bank