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10 Money Tips Every Teen Should Know, by Laura Adams


This week’s guest post features Laura Adams, author and personal finance expert.  She shares the top 10 tips every teen should learn in order to become money-savvy.

Becoming savvy about money doesn’t happen overnight. When the time is right, take advantage of every opportunity to teach your kids about money. Those early lessons and conversations you have with them about money lay a strong foundation for them to build on as they grow up.

Here are 10 financial concepts and tips that every money-savvy teen should know:

Tip #1: Cultivate a Good Money Mindset

Be aware of how you think about money and avoid people who focus on negative thoughts and ideas. Instead, create friendships with people who are positive, successful, and want to overcome obstacles. Those relationships will lead you to new opportunities and support your positive thinking.

Tip #2: You’re Paid When You Create Value

No matter if you’re age 15 or 55, you earn money by using your talents, creativity, and skills to create value in your own business or for an employer. Make sure you understand what you’re good at and continue to develop those skills throughout your entire education and career.

Tip #3: Never Spend More Than You Earn

It’s impossible to have a healthy financial life if you spend more than you make. Creating a spending plan and monitoring your expenses is a smart way to make sure you understand where your money is going.

Tip #4: Make Saving a Habit

Saving is a deliberate decision to put money aside for emergencies, future purchases, or retirement. Once you make the choice to begin saving, it can be fun and rewarding to see your balance rise!

Tip #5: Have an Emergency Fund

Don’t let an unexpected expense or loss of income derail your financial dreams. As soon as you start working, make it a goal to create an emergency fund that you never touch except for a dire circumstance. Having a financial safety net gives you peace of mind that you can handle any temporary setback.

Tip #6: Cash is King

When you buy consumer goods like cars, electronics, and furniture using a loan or credit card, the interest you pay makes the total cost go up dramatically. It’s better to save up the cash and shop for the best deal.

Tip #7: Building Wealth is a Long-Term Endeavor

Building wealth takes time—but it can be achieved if you put away small amounts of money on a consistent basis. Make it a habit to save no less than 10% of your income, starting with your first job.

Tip #8: Use Retirement Accounts

If your employer offers a retirement plan, always take advantage of it. Retirement accounts are vehicles that allow you to save for the future and reduce your taxes at the same time. Since contributions are deducted from your paycheck before you ever see them, you’ll never miss the money.

Tip #9: Taxes are a Part of Life

Understand what taxes you have to pay. When you start working, ask your employer to explain what deductions are taken out of your paycheck. If you become self-employed, use a tax accountant to make sure you set aside enough to cover what you’ll owe.

Tip #10: Keep a Clean History

Most employers check your background before they offer you a job. They can review your credit history, driving record, criminal record, and social media profiles. So make sure that you protect your reputation and don’t give a potential boss any reason to turn you down for a good job.

Laura Adams is a personal finance expert and award-winning author of Money Girl’s Smart Moves to Grow Rich. She writes and hosts the weekly Money Girl podcast, a top-rated audio show with over 500,000 downloads per month. Laura is a blogger, speaker, spokesperson, and Certified Personal Finance Counselor who works one-one-one with clients as a financial coach. She received an MBA from the University of Florida and lives in the Orlando area with her husband and yellow Lab. To learn more about Laura, connect on social media, or ask your money question, visit SmartMovesToGrowRich.com.

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