Birthday dilemma…? Here’s how to ensure it’s a success

‘Money, Money, Money’ previously appeared in Families First, 24th October 2016

Parents all know what it’s like in the build-up to birthdays. Endless requests for this computer game, or that doll, or this book. Parents and grandparents like to spoil their children and grandchildren for their Birthdays, and children like to be spoiled. Yet, with research suggesting that 40% of presents are unwanted, do children really appreciate the financial value of their gifts? Probably not….

The value of money 

In fact, it seems children are growing up with a lack of understanding of the value of money more generally. At nimbl, we surveyed 6,000 parents and found that 7 in 10 think that children understand the value of money less well than they did when they were young. So what can we do to help ensure our children develop an appreciation of the value of money?

Planning a menu 

If you think your child is old enough, why not explain how much money is available to spend and see how this influences what appears on their birthday list! Also giving them exposure to the cost of each item, might give them a clearer understanding of what they are asking for – meaning expectations are more likely to be met.

Teach the gift of Giving

As well as having your children budget for their gifts, why not ask them to help buy presents for friends and family for their birthdays? Set a budget for each person, and if they’re old enough, send them into town to choose something special. Young people can be so thoughtful and it’s a great way to get a little help when you’re running short of ideas!

Through nimbl family and friends can ‘Gift’ money to your children, it’s the simple way to safely send money and even better they can save or purchase something they really want… which means no more unwanted presents! 

Don’t stop at Birthdays

Why not give your children control of their own allowances, granted, they might make a few mistakes but though experiencing and learning they should become much more careful about what they purchase. Also influencing them to shop around for the things they want to buy – resulting in a better purchase price and their allowance stretching further.  

Encourage them to contribute

For a big ticket item such as a laptop or Playstation, why not offer to help your child pay for it? Rather than cover the entire cost, ask your child to make a contribution through their pocket money, or by helping out around the house. Even if they only make a token contribution, it will help them appreciate the cost and really value what they have.

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