Did you know? Studies have shown that money matters can put a strain on relationships; but don’t worry, we’ve got some helpful tips to make those family conversations about finances a lot smoother.
How to Talk to Your Kids About Money
Studies show that most parents do talk to their kids about money, and those parents discuss it at least once a month. In fact, half of them talk about money “often,” meaning twice per month or more.
However, if you feel reluctant to have the money talk with your kids, you’re not alone. Fewer than half of parents consider themselves well prepared to have those conversations. You can do it! Because preparation promotes productive discussions, here are some ways to make it easier to talk to your kids about money:
- Encourage their finance questions and answer them simply and in an age-appropriate way.
- Share your values about saving and donating.
- Be open about budgeting for specific things like a vacation, a special outing, or a big-ticket purchase.
- Set up a savings account for them. Then, connect work or chores with an allowance and help them make regular deposits into their account.
Tips for Having the Money Talk With Your Partner
Even if one person usually handles the day-to-day finances, both partners should be aware of key financial information in case of unexpected events like illness or incapacity.
Here are six essential conversation starters to make having the money talk with your partner easier:
- Do we have a list of all of our accounts, investments, and debts? Having this information readily available during emergencies can save time and prevent legal issues. Also, consider giving each other legal access to these resources if needed.
- Do we both know where important financial records are kept? Knowing where to locate information quickly can help give you both peace of mind.
- Where is our list of usernames and passwords for shared accounts? Keeping track of online financial information through apps can be convenient, so ensure that both of you have the login details.
- How do we each manage bill payments and track expenses? This will help you both stay on top of your budget and maintain your financial well-being.
- Where are our shared legal documents like birth certificates, marriage licenses, and passports kept? Easy access to proof of identity may expedite various situations, from hospital visits to loan applications.
- What do we envision for our future, including end-of-life arrangements? It might be tough to discuss, but knowing each other’s wishes, information about life insurance or wills, and being aware of beneficiaries may make those decisions less traumatic when the time comes.
Money Conversations Between Generations Made Easier
Discussing financial matters with aging parents is often harder than talking to your children or partner about money. These discussions may feel uncomfortable, but they’re essential for protecting and responsibly managing your parents’ finances.
Here are some key topics to cover:
- Ask where documents such as bank account information, asset and liability documentation, deeds, titles, and life insurance policies are kept.
- Discuss plans in case of illness or incapacity, including any power of attorney arrangements your loved one may have made.
- Talk about ongoing healthcare needs, as they tend to increase with age. Discuss and document these needs along with any savings or insurance plans set aside for this purpose.
- Plan for the future, including estate arrangements. Discuss how creating a will or trust to outline property distribution and handle matters after someone passes away is a smart move.
Maintaining Open Communication While talking about money with your family might be uncomfortable at first, it builds healthy relationships and ensures financial well-being. Have questions about managing your finances? Reach out to your financial institution. They love to talk about money!