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Would you take from your children’s savings?

Would you take from your childrens savings?
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Times are tough at the moment for many parents but would you take from your children’s savings? Rising heating bills, petrol prices higher than ever before, shopping bills on the increase and rent or mortgage payments hanging over your head every month.

At the centre of our world are our children and their well being, ensuring they are provided for and are shielded from any money pressures on the family. As our children grow older, we might open a savings account for them to put money aside for university or a deposit on a house and money is increasingly given as birthday and Christmas gifts. So when our children have money to hand and we don’t, is it right to dip into their savings now and again?

Many parent’s doWould you take from your childrens savings?

A recent study in the US showed that nearly half of all parents have taken money from their child’s savings and a further half of those didn’t feel guilty about doing so. The money taken was mainly to pay bills, followed by debt repayment, then purchasing gifts and finally to put towards a holiday. Families have been lending each other money for years so the concept isn’t anything out of the ordinary but there are many who feel that because it is their child’s money, there is no real requirement to repay it, yet had you borrowed from a friend or relative, you would do.

Does where the money comes from matter?

Another distinguishing feature is whether their savings are a culmination of the money you have given them as pocket money or if it is savings made up from Christmas and birthday money given by others?  Some parents might not think twice of dipping into their kid’s piggy bank for a fiver when they can’t get to a cash point but if they have savings for long term investments such as university, they would never dream of such a thing.

Set basic rules

Ultimately, if there is a bailiff knocking on your door or food that needs to be put on the table, some parents have no option than to use their children’s money. If this is the case, try and stick to some basic ground rules starting with always asking to borrow the money first! The reason you need to borrow the money should be born of a genuine need or emergency such as fuel, shopping, boiler break down etc. Bottles of wine, cigarettes or simply because you’re too tired to nip to the cash machine don’t count!

Avoid long term savings

Try and only borrow what is in their piggy bank rather than cash in any premium bonds in their name or inheritance set aside for a house deposit, unless you are in absolute dire straights and facing repossession or eviction – the last thing you want is to jeopardise their future in any way. Any money you do borrow should always be repaid, so write them out an IOU with the amount borrowed and when you will pay it back. Larger amounts could be repaid monthly and you might want to add on a little interest too as a thank you and to teach your child the costs of borrowing.

Premier bank accounts piggy banks

Keep your promises!

Finally, keep to your promise. Repay on time and should you need to borrow again your child can trust you. If you don’t repay, this harbors resentment and can have an adverse effect on their attitude to saving, ‘why should I bother saving when mum and dad take it away?’ Keeping your arrangements as business-like as possible can teach your children some valuable lessons for the future and hopefully instill the right attitude towards money management and financial astuteness.

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About Rebecca Robinson

About Rebecca Robinson

After spending the last 8 years juggling life as a mum of two, wife and working full time as a Project Manager for a global telecommunications company, Rebecca Robinson made the decision to follow her love of writing and took the plunge; turning her passion into a full time career. Since becoming a full time writer, Rebecca has worked with various media and copy-writing companies and with the ability to make any topic relevant and interesting to the reader, now contributes to The Working Parent on articles ranging from credit cards to teenage relationships. Ever the optimist, Rebecca's dreams for the future include a house in the country filled with children, dogs and horses in the field!

Website: Rebecca Robinson

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