A time will come when your teen grows up and flies the coop. They might be leaving to learn how to manage life on their own, to stay with friends, for college, or to get married.
Regardless of the reason, it's wise to prepare them for that day. As parents, we all want our kids to be independent and self-sufficient. But economic factors may not always comply. And that's why some young adults need more help from their parents when moving out.
But what if you're not ready to help them financially? Perhaps you're trying to make ends meet, helping younger kids or saving for retirement. If that's you, don't worry.
You can still help them in other ways. In this blog post, we outline six strategies to prepare your teen for life away from home.
Talk About The Financial Implications Of Moving Out
Most teens underestimate the financial implications of living away from home. That's why it is not uncommon to see some of them run back home after a short while.
Therefore, it's extremely important to discuss all the cost implications of moving out. As a first step, work with them to create a spending plan. Help them list down all the costs they will have to incur when living on their own.
Include expenses such as rent, groceries, insurance, phone, utilities, and more. This will help them get the bigger picture, create a budget, and keep an open mind.
Encourage Your Teen To Live Below Their Means
Explain the importance of living below your means to your kids. Advise them to live like students as it will help them save more money.
For instance, advise them to have roommates and cut expenses to save for an emergency. Also, encourage them to start saving for retirement as early as possible.
Create A Personalized Cookbook
Food is one of the biggest costs when living away from home. And while young adults may initially prefer to live on pizza and noodles, most of them appreciate the importance of preparing meals at home later.
So help them create cookbooks before they move out. Some day they will enjoy flipping through a cookbook as they opt to cook for themselves.
Apart from strengthening your relationship with them while they're away, your teen will eat healthy food and save more money.
Get Help When Needed
Sometimes talking about personal finances with teenagers or young adults can become volatile. If that happens, don't give up. Instead, seek other alternatives.
For example, you can encourage them to enroll in a financial class or invite a professional to moderate the discussion. Some employers provide financial wellness programs for young adults. Encourage them to join such initiatives.
Get Help When Needed
When all is said and done, it can be prudent to conduct a test run at home. Arrange for your teen to live at home just like they would live on their own.
Ask them to pay rent, contribute to household items, utilities, and other expenses. This will prepare them for what they'll face out there.
Just be sure to structure their contribution to reflect their income levels so you don't scare them from leaving the nest.
Keep The Conversation Going
The best way to become financially literate is to talk about money from an early age. And that can only be achieved through having frank and open conversations.
So once your child leaves the nest, keep on checking on them. Ask them how they're doing, their goals, and their progress so far.
How did you prepare your teens for life away from home? Did they turn out as expected? We would love to hear from you. Share your thoughts and experiences with us.