Spending Too Much on Your Kids?
Every parent knows that raising a child can be expensive, from the cost food and housing to education and health care, and many other costs in between. With a price tag of somewhere between $12,000-$14,000, raising a child eats up a huge portion of a family budget. And if you throw in extras such as summer camps and private schooling, the amount spent on kids each year can feel insurmountable.
But when does spending cross the line and become excessive? At what point do parents do their children a disservice by gifting them expensive things such as phones, cars, and video game systems? Parents who demonstrate unlimited spending not only teach their children poor spending habits but break their own banks. In the end, kids may not be prepared for the disappointments and challenges of the "real world". And children may also learn careless spending from their parents and continue that legacy.
Below are some indicators that you may be spending too much on extras! Do you fit any of the scenarios? If so, you may want to think twice before spending extra money on your child.
Advertising is a powerful force in our culture, and peer pressure can do a number on kids. Between the two, kids will push to buy more expensive brands either because they see it in advertising or "all the kids have it".
Once again, advertising is loud, colorful, inviting and fun. An innocent children's show can quickly turn into a flashy and fun ad for the coolest toy ever.
A child's whining and fussing can be incredibly challenging when you have a full shopping cart and are almost ready to check out! That's when parents give in to that whiny request for a toy or snack. Tired and stressed parents also give in.
Parents these days can spend $400 and up on lavish parties involving extreme entertainment, activities and lots of kids! And once you start the trend, it's difficult to stop because kids learn to expect all the bells and whistles.
Many activities not only require money to participate, but parents find that they are spending lots of money driving kids to and from events and activities. And some sports require equipment that is expensive and used for a short time. In this competitive and busy world, kids are often involved in way too many activities and inevitably don't enjoy them all.
by Joanne McNulty, MS