6 Steps To Raise Financially Responsible Children: Step 1

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Your Own Financial Future

It is important to put a short and long-term financial plan together for your family finances. Ideally it is best to do before you begin educating your child about managing their own money. Remember, it is not what you say but what you do. So if you are trying to teach your child one thing and doing the exact opposite, your lessons will have little impact and you will lose credibility. However, don’t let your own procrastination stop the financial education process all together, you can still infom your child of the basic money principles even if your own financial health isn’t in top form.

Take the brief test below to get an idea of the state of your financial health and to pinpoint areas where you may need more work. Simply answer the questions with a Yes or No and keep track of your answers to obtain your quiz results once completed.

Financial Health Test

I can easily locate the paperwork and documents for all of my insurance policies, investments, and deeds for my car(s) and home(s).

True False

I know the total value of my net worth–including my savings, investments, home equity, etc.–updated on a quarterly basis.

True False

I know approximately how much I spend on utility bills and other staples each month, and am able to stay within a specific range.

True False

I have established a maximum amount I may spend of my discretionary income each month and stay strictly within that limit.

True False

I always have a target limit in mind of what I can afford to spend on a daily basis, such as when I shop at the supermarket, drug store, the mall, or go out for lunch or dinner.

True False

I have at least one utility registered in my name and at least one credit card under my name alone–not as a joint account.

True False

I check my credit rating at least once every three years and before every major purchase, such as a car or home.

True False

I have closed all credit card accounts that I do not regularly use.

True False

I have paid off all outstanding debts and any other blemishes on my credit report, and am current to date on my payments.

True False

I have consolidated the majority of my debt into just one or two payments a month with low interest rates.

True False

I have at least three to six months worth of living expenses saved in case of an emergency.

True False

I have a percentage of my salary deferred to a long-term retirement account each paycheck (either I do this myself or it is automatically deducted by my employer).

True False

I have established three short-term financial goals, such as saving for a car, vacation, or a Christmas account.

True False

I have established three long-term financial goals, such as saving for a downpayment on a home, investing for my child’s college education, or retirement.

True False

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