Today I’m going to tell you exactly why I don’t think you should give your children a piggy bank if you want to encourage them to save!
I should say before I start that all children are different and this is my opinion based on my experience of my two who are great little savers. 😉
Both of my children are brilliant at saving, Miss Frugal especially although I think that’s more because she’s older and gets more money each month, therefore has more money to save. When we booked to go to New York, she saved more money than I managed to with a combination of pocketmoney, babysitting money and money that she got for her Birthday and Christmas.
She’s very visual so rather than having all her money in a savings account or a piggy bank where she couldn’t see the actual money, she kept her coins in a mason jar.
She kept the jar on her bedside cabinet and took great pride in seeing the jar fill up. It made a huge difference to her to be able to see the money she was saving and it definitely motivated her to keep going.
She says that having the money on display like that rather than having it hidden away in a piggy bank makes her happy and that it makes her want to save more rather and that when she used to have a piggy bank it almost felt as though it wasn’t there. That sounds odd I know but when I definitely think that she’s a visual learner so it makes sense that she’s motivated visually too.
She still keeps her cash in the same mason jar and is currently saving for a holiday next month. It’s really sweet to hear her run upstairs when she gets any money and put the money straight in her savings jar.
We’ve also made a DIY savings jar in the past and we purposefully kept a strip of the jar clear so you could see the savings building up inside….
So she uses the savings jars for cash that she gets for babysitting and Birthdays etc but for pocketmoney, both kids have had a Go Henry account for a few years now which has been brilliant. They get a debit card so they can use use the card to access her spend in shops and online as well as use an ATM for cash whenever she wants but the best part about it is the app which has two sections – one for the parent and one for the child. In the parent section, I can see everything in her part of the app but I can also top up, set limits and see exactly what they’re doing. In the child section they can set themselves a savings target and visually see how they’re doing against that target which again is a real motivator for them.
I’ve written more about GoHenry here and if you’re thinking about opening an account for your children then I’d definitely recommend it. Miss Frugal is at the stage where she’s asked for an actual bank account so we’ve just opened one up for her but I’ll be sad to get rid of the GoHenry thanks to the motivation of the goals tracking section of the app.
So, if your child is motivated by seeing their cash grow, anything they can see the cash through or an account that comes with an app like the GoHenry app is much better for them than a piggy bank or even worse one of those pots that you can’t get into until you smash it.
They’ll enjoy saving more because they can see it building up and that will make them want to save even more!
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