By Alison Stone
Previously in the olden days, kids used to get pocket money or lunch money, and this was all the money they had. Now, many teenagers have used a credit card at least once in their life. Credit cards are convenient, and allow access to thousands of merchants that offer goods and services all over the world. Some cardholders use credit on an emergency basis, while some others misuse it.
If you have teens and you allow them credit card access, you need to teach them how to use the credit cards responsibly. Here are a few tips to help you get started:
Have The Talk
If you can talk to your kids about the dangers of social evils such as drug abuse and irresponsible intercourse, you can also talk to your kids about the use of credit cards. Help them understand how and why they should be responsible about the cards.
Tell Them About Available Help
If in case your teen has gotten into credit debt, you need to help them get out of it by pointing them in the right direction. Organizations like My Vesta and NFCC (National Foundation for Credit Counselling) can help them pay off their debts.
Limit The Credit Card
If you think that your teen has a tendency to go overboard, limit their access to a maximum of $500 monthly. This will ensure that your son or daughter does not spend more than necessary on his/her credit card.
Get A Student Credit Card
Banks are very flexible now for different aged people, which is why a lot of organizations now offer specialized student credit cards. These cards do not only teach the student to use credit cards responsibly, but also monitor the flow and keep the parents informed.
- Do Not Hide The Bad
Do not keep your teen in the dark by not explaining what could happen if he goes over the limit. You cannot help him all his life; he will need to do this on his own sometime later in his life. Therefore, sit down and explain all the consequences of credit card overuse that he needs to avoid.
Set A Positive Example
Children learn from their parents, so set a positive example for them first. If you will keep your bank credits secured, your kids will understand how they are supposed to use their card too. If you keep spending extra through the card, they will do the same. Use the credit card responsibly yourself in order to forward the manners in your children.
Differentiate Between Need And Want
Your child has needs and wants. He goes to a school where he interacts with children of different backgrounds. It is your responsibility to help him understand the difference between needs and wants so that he develops a sense of responsible credit card usage.
Encourage Your Child To Save Money
Instead of just focusing on the negatives, also teach your children a positive usage by encouraging them to save money. Help them look at the bigger picture by saving money for greater needs. You child would be thankful to you when he grows up and able to save even a few bucks.
Encourage Them To Get A Job
Help your children start looking for a job so that they rely more on their wages than on credit cards when it comes to spending. It would also make them stand on their feet and independent.
Credit cards can be a big responsibility, and you need to ensure your teens that you have their support all the way.