Basics in Teaching Children About Money
Parents who take the
time to teach their children about money will be
doing their children a great service. As a parent,
it is important to look back on your youth and think
about how your parents taught, or did not teach, you
about money. Then think about what you would like
your child to know about money. There are many
different ways you can go about teaching your child
about money. What they learn from you will most
likely follow them the rest of their lives.
about money can provide life-long lessons of responsibility.
For example, if a child spends all his or her money on soda
and candy, he or she might not have enough left over for an
afternoon out with friends.
This scenario could
have two endings. First, the child receives money from you
to cover the expense for the outing, or second, he or she
talks with their friends about doing something that does not
require money. This might sound harsh
to not give up a few dollars so your child can have
an afternoon out. However, take a look into the
future. If your grown-up children, spend all their
money on luxury items (cars, trips, music, etc.)
they may find themselves short on money for a house
payment, tuition, or an insurance premium. The
consequences then will be much more severe.
Remember each child is different and may require
a different approach to ensure that learning is
successful. There are many different ways to help
children understand money. This can be done through
an allowance, budgeting, and teaching them different
aspects about finances such as savings and credit.
10 common car-buying mistakes
In the market for a new set of wheels? Before you
step foot in a dealership, arm yourself with these
tips. If you don't, you could be taken for a ride.
With today's price cuts, cash-back offers and
promises of ultra cheap financing, it might seem
like now is a great time to buy a new car. But don't
break out your checkbook just yet. Take the time to
do a little homework first.
Many car-buying mistakes are quite common, say auto
industry watchers. To identify those errors, we
asked for advice from experts at Edmunds.com,
and Associates and AAA. They gave us their best
advice for navigating what can be a confusing path
to buying a car.
They also told us that most dealers are honest,
reliable and hardworking local businessmen and
women, but that there are some simple precautions
every consumer should take before purchasing a car:
1. Talking too much.
Three things to never say on the lot: "I need this
car now" (desperation breeds price inflation); "I
love this car" (emotions make you vulnerable); and
"This is how much I can afford to pay per month"
(once dealers know how much you want to pay per
month, they'll find other ways -- through fees,
warranties and financing -- to make up the
difference between that payment ceiling and how much
they must make on a sale. Talk about the absolute
price of a car, not the
2. Not doing your research.
Walking into a dealership open to any ideas the
salesperson has is a bad idea -- it makes you
vulnerable to impulsively buying something you don't
need, can't afford or ultimately won't want.
Determining the market value of your car will help
you know where to begin negotiations on the starting
price of the vehicle. Use Kelley Blue Book (you can
check Kelley values on MSN Autos
NADA Guides research center,
Edmunds.com to find the true market value
and the expected residual value of the car you want.
3. Not being realistic about what you need.
Before you hit the showroom floor, take a hard look
at the kind of driving you do. Don't assume you need
a brand-new car, and consider keeping a driving
journal for a week, or even a month, to chart
exactly when, where and how far you drive each day.
Then buy a vehicle according to those needs -- not
aspirations, like thinking "maybe someday we'll need
to tow a boat, so I need a truck with three-ton
4. Leasing a car because you can't afford the down
Lease payments, especially for luxury cars, don't
require a down payment and are often cheaper per
month than what it costs to buy the car outright.
But they don't always pay off. You've got to
determine if having a new car every two or three
years and with no
but no ownership and no stake in the residual value
-- is more important than long-term cost savings and
ownership of a vehicle you will eventually pay off.
5. Assuming you'll use the dealer's financing.
Instead of going though the dealership, arrange for
financing at your bank or credit union. And choose
the shortest-term car loan you can; long-term loans
coax people into buying cars they can't really
afford by stretching out the payments over such a
long period that the car is almost fully depreciated
by the time it's paid off.
6. Buying at the beginning of the month.
Dealers don't offer their best deals or
incentives until the end of the month, when they
realize how close (or far) they are from hitting
monthly sales goals. So if you can, wait it out.
7. Buying at the beginning of the year.
Dealers have less incentive to give you a great
deal at the start of the year, when their
inventory is brand-new and they have 12 months
to hit annual sales targets. But in December,
they'll have to clear out old stock in time for
the new model-year cars to hit the showroom.
That's when you should buy.
8. Discussing the trade-in deal during the
Be honest at the beginning that you may want to
trade in your old vehicle -- but keep the
new-car purchase discussion and the trade-in
value discussion separate. If the purchase and
the trade become one big transaction, it's
easier for the dealer to fudge on how much you
actually pay for the new car.
9. Assuming a hybrid is "greener" than gasoline
Hybrids use less fuel than gasoline-powered cars
of the same model, but they don't always offer
huge gains. The $38,340
Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid
in the HY2 four-wheel-drive crew cab trim
package delivers 20 miles per gallon city and
highway, while the all-gas $20,850
four-wheel-drive crew cab work truck gets
identical highway mileage (granted, it gets a
significantly lower 14 mpg city). Smaller
engines, like those found in Ford's $28,950
and fewer CO2 emissions compared with larger
10. Visiting only one dealer.
Don't hesitate to walk off the lot if a dealer
can't meet your terms or expectations. The more
you know about the options one dealer is
offering, the stronger your negotiating position
with another. If you live in a small town with
just one showroom, call a dealer in the nearest
metropolitan area to get a quote (it'll most
likely be lower than in your rural area) and
then see if your local guy can meet it.
This article was reported by Hannah Elliott for