Finance Courses for Teenagers & Forward 0938-08 04-20-08
Kids, Money & their use of the Internet & Plastic - 0938-08 ZZfwi
Finance Courses for Teenagers & Forward 0928-08 04-20-08

                             TO:   All Interested Onliners                                                                            FROM: Jim Bramer. Auditor-CPA
                                                                                                                                                             FILE:  0938-08/fwi

                             RE:   Kids, Money & their use of the Internet & Plastic                            Originated in April 2008

  Today's  "FOR WHAT IT IS WORTH" editorial   

            Let me share some thoughts with you as to "Kids, Money & their use of the Internet & Plastic."  
            At our Church, m
y wife and this "Grandpa Jim" work with Sparky AWANA kids who are in Kindergarten or the 1st/2nd grades.  Mostly we help them learn their memory verses, etc. 
            One of the features of the AWANA program is that the kids earn AWANA incentive money by doing various AWANA requirements so they can buy things at the AWANA Store.  Even at this early age, they are learning to either: 

    A>  Use their AWANA money to buy inexpensive things "NOW" or
    B>  Save it up for "LATER" purchases of more meaningful and expensive items for others or for themselves.

            By the way ..... did you notice the cartoon where Mommy has a pen in one hand and the checkbook in the other and makes the following frustrating statement:   "I can not make my checkbook balance."   Little guy hears Mommy say this and takes her pen and the checkbook and shows her how to "balance" the checkbook by placing it on the pen he is holding in such a way so that it does not fall off and says:  "Look, Mommy! here's how to balance your checkbook."    At the appropriate time,  Kids must learn the real meaning of "Balancing the Checkbook."
            In the past few days I saw a VERY meaningful statement, namely:  "More than 80% of high school kids now daily use the Internet." This probably means that they have a computer that they carry with them,  or they can regularly access one at home or at school.  With this in mind, and since most every human being ultimately handles money,  it seems appropriate for Dads/Moms to teach them to use this "toy" to also be responsible and God-honoring money stewards. 
            I believe that Dads/Mom should begin steps no later than when the kids are Juniors/Seniors in High School so they can learn how their money is used for
"Spending Now"  or "Spend it Later" purposes. 

                                                                                101- Before College    

            Within this context, It is my view that  these kids should now have their own Online Checking and Savings Accounts (preferably utilizing the remote resources at a place like ECCU )  plus one Online Credit Card Account.  We see more and more kids buying with Plastic (either Credit Cards or Gift cards) these days.  If kids are using Credit Cards this should be done with the full permission/supervision of their Dads/Moms and preferably within context of the following:

     01>  For control and overview purposes, both the kids and their Dad/Mom have Online access to these Bank Accounts and the Credit Card account
     02>  All money they receive is to go either into their Checking or Savings Accounts --- they cash no checks.  Any allowance provided by their Dad/Mom goes directly into their Checking Account -  it does not go to them via Green Stuff.   
     03>  The kids handle a minimum of Green Stuff -- Dad/Mom provide them with the above allowance but hardly ever should Dad/Mom say yes to "I need some Green Stuff, please etc etc "
     04>  At this stage in their life, they learn to get the necessary Green Stuff by using the ATM as they take money from their allowance resident within their Bank Accounts.
     05>  Their Savings Account is used for their desirable future purchases, etc.  They Online transfer money to/from their Checking Account and their Savings Account per their desire.
     06>  As is pleasing to their Lord, they learn to make regular contributions to their Church
     07>  Kids "
MUST"  weekly go Online and pay off their Credit Card account or they do not get their next weekly allowance from their Dad/Mom.

201  - Freshmen in College 

            Of course, when they become Freshman in College they build from the 101 experiences as they pursue the use of these processes:  1>  Use the minimum amount of Green Stuff;  2> Make use of the ATM,  3> Has their own Checking and Saving Bank Accounts.  4> Plus one Credit Card account that is paid off weekly.  Dad/Mom have Online access to their Bank Account and Credit Card Account.   But the student carries their disciplined "Spending Control"  process a step farther.   Namely, the student begins to operate from not one Checking Account but two "Check Stubs.
            The first  "Check Stub" is used for "To Spend Now"  purposes and the other for  "To Spend Later" purposes.  The student keeps running balances manually of these two "Check Stubs"  and makes sure that the balance in the Online Checking Account agrees with the running balances of the two "Check Stubs." 
            An example of the "To Spend Later"  Check Stub activity of the Freshman would be a weekly amount coming from Dad/Mom to pay the Schools monthly Tuition/Fees/Room/Board and/or any other required school costs.  In other words, it would be the student's responsibility to deal with the amounts due monthly to the School as managed from the Freshman's "To Spend Later" Check Stub, etc.   Dad/Mom will probably also send money for the Student to spend at their discretion, which, of course, goes into the "To Spend Now"  Check Stub area.  Please  Click Here  and learn about an involved "Check Stub"  process even as used by non-Students in their overall pursuit of "Spending Controls" as pleasing to the Lord.  
            Dad/Mom might pursue the general idea of having these Student Bank/Plastic accounts as part of their own Banking structure as it would be easier to transfer money from the Dads/Moms Bank Account to the Student's Bank Accounts as well as to facilitate the Dads/Moms overview of what is going on in the Student's accounts.  Please look into what  ECCU  has to offer along these lines.

                         CAUTION:  Be careful about perks along these lines as given by banks to attract college students

301  - Remaining Years in College

            The Student in a disciplined manner continues with the above applicable 101 and 201 processes that again includes at least such steps as:  A> Pay off Credit Card Balance weekly  B> Minimize use of Green Stuff  C> Maximize use of ECCU or similar Credit Union resources   D> Maximum  use of Plastic (Credit Card and Debit Card)  E>  Maximize use of Online Bank and Plastic resources   F>  Dad/Mom also continue to have Online access to these Bank and Credit Card accounts of the Student.

    1>  Student will no doubt be earning some money of their own during both the school year and during the summers.
    2>  At some point in time all parties need to deal with the student having their own vehicles and other increased life style costs, etc. 
    3>  Bear in mind that their life style is much more involved such as is spelled out in this version of the use of "Check Stubs" when you  Click Here      

401 - Unmarried and Post College Days

            At this point, Issues now might involve:  1<  They basically carry on with the above 101, 201 and 301 basic disciplined "Spending Control" features via use of the two "Check Stubs" as explained above.  But now Dad/Mom, of course, do not have Online access to the Bank and Credit Card accts  2<  The former student is now no doubt on their own as they earn their own money.  3< Reminder:  They do not cash pay checks --- they deposit them into their Bank Accounts for full accountability and control and 4<  They continue to pay off their Credit Card balance every week so they have no Credit Card debt.  This former student's life style is now much more complicated so while they continue with the general "Spending Control" concepts that they have maintained during their College days, they embrace such additional resources as:

    a>  This former student  no longer uses the two "Check Stubs" method.
    b>  But this person continues to embrace the "To Spend Now" or "To Spend Later" concepts,  as  .....
    c>  They more fully utilize the Internet and they use older versions of the software product known as QuickBooks Pro (QBs)
    d>  Which enables them to use the overall QBuxBox Spending control Method   where features include:  1>  Via  actions described when you  Click Here,  make a hard copy of your Credit Card transactions that you access Online   2>  You pay off your Credit Card balance shown by the hard copy  3>  You set up your QBuxBox system according to your defined "Spending Areas" and limits.  4>  You go Online and electronically move your Bank Account (Checking and Savings) transactions to your QBs software as they go into a "To be Distributed"  account therein .  5>  You go to QBs and zero out this "To be Distributed" QBs account as you manually place such transactions into the respective "Spending Control/QBuxBox"  areas of QBs  6>  You then go to your QBs Reports  and learn if you have any money to spend during the next week, etc.

501 - Married and Post College Days 

            Former students like this are now, of course, completely on their own with probably more elaborate "Spending Control" categories plus the need for their spouse to understand and embrace the principles found in 101, 201, 301 and 401 above and assume their appropriate money stewardship tasks as they make use of  available resources.  Hopefully that have learned from the steps above and can now manage their money in ways that please the Lord.

K E E P   L O O K I N G   U P !!

  CLICK HERE  or a list of our "For What it is Worth" Editorials or Online documents.

UPTD: June 08, 2012