Posts Tagged ‘Budget’

Note From Wil: This is a guest post from Kelly Austin, a writer with  Much of what Miss Austin writes today should sound familiar to many readers. Much of her advice today can also be found in various articles right here on F4Y:TB. I include her take for those newer readers who might not have read some of those older posts.

I like to include the writings and opinions of as many people as I can.  If you want to contribute to Finance For Youth: The Blog, send me an email:

Personal finance is one subject that does not get enough attention in the education system, so it is up to parents to raise financially literate children. Here are five actions that you can do to help teach your teenager about personal finance.

Get a job: Encourage your teen to find a part-time job so that he learns the value of work and develops a good work habit. Giving allowances is okay, but adults have to work for their money; no one just gives money to them. Help your teen look for a paper route, babysitting job or a job at the local fast food joint. Working ten to fifteen hours a week while in high school will help them learn to prioritize their time and earn money for their spending and savings needs.
(Note from Wil:  I talk about this very topic HERE!)

Open a Checking Account: Your teen probably has a savings account but it’s good to get him a checking account so he can deposit and use his hard-earned cash. You can get your name put on the account so that you can oversee his transactions. Let him get a debit card and teach him to balance his account regularly. Even if he messes up and gets an overdraft charge, it’s better to do it now than to rack up thousands in credit card charges and fees as an adult.
(Note from Wil:  I talk about this very topic HERE!)

Make A Budget: Once your teen has a job, show him how to make a balanced budget. The expenses must equal (or at least less than) the income otherwise he’ll go into debt. Allocate extra money to savings goals. If your teen doesn’t have a job, you might consider giving him a lump sum of money equal to what you usually give him annually (or quarterly) for his clothing and entertainment expenses. Then it’s up to him to spend it appropriately. Do not bail him out if he wastes it. The best thing you can do is to give him some household chores so he can earn some money.
(Note from Wil:  I talk about this very topic HERE!)

Read A Good Personal Finance Book: There are a few great books that teach personal finance and are enjoyable for teens. Consider giving your teen a copy of Dave Ramsey‘s Total Money Makeover or Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez. I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi is also great for teens as it was written when he was just out of college and has a writing style that appeals to a younger audience.
(Note from Wil:  I personally don’t agree that all of these books or authors are great, but that’s my opinion.  For a F4Y friendly book, You can always go with THIS ONE!)

Set Short and Long Term Financial Goals: Your teen will likely have a long list of needs and wants. Help him to prioritize them and set short and long-term savings goals. Short term goals might be saving for a concert, buying a car or new computer. Long term goals will likely be college, an apartment or car upgrade.
(Note from Wil:  This is the name of the game!  I talk about this everywhere online and in Finance For Youth: The Book!)

This guest article was contributed by Kelly Austin from Visit her site for information about salary and benefit information for many popular careers.

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Since this is the month where we all have to pay money we don’t have in taxes that won’t be spent well, I decided to break loose with the secrets to real wealth that all personal finance people know that we don’t share. The truth is, PF people have been yanking chains for centuries since the web was discovered. We kind of have to if we want to keep our membership in the Personal Finance cabal.

Well I’m tired of keeping you, my loyal readers, from learning how to make some scrilla on the real. I don’t care anymore. You deserve better than that from me, and dammit this is my chance to do right by you. Here’s my problem. I’m not going to risk the chastisement and the beatings that the illunimoney (The official name of the overseers of the Personal Finance community) for 5 people. If I just put the rules on this post, it will be shut down, along with the rest of within minutes.

I’ve enabled a string of code within this post that will send readers a copy of the coveted secrets to true wealth known to us PF people. It will be triggered by getting 1000 hits to this post, or 250 email comments that repeat a specific phrase (which I’m embedding into the video below). I wish you all well with the information you will receive.

Because I’ve chosen to embark on this path, it is with great sorrow and sadness that I also announce that this will be the final post from Finance For Youth: The Blog. It has been a great run, but what is f4y about if I can’t at least make my readers filthy rich? This has been the adventure of a lifetime, and I thankful that you have allowed me to take it with you.

Once again, find the phrase embedded below and send me at least 250 different email comments containing it and the code will be delivered into your mail box within one hour of the 250th message.



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Ask most Finance professionals to name important aspects of personal finance, and I will guarantee that the word “budget” or some euphemism thereof is among the top answers. If it isn’t, I’d argue that you need find experts that know what they are talking about. Budgets are important. defines budget as:

noun, adjective, verb, -et·ed, -et·ing.


1. an estimate, often itemized, of expected income and expense for a given period in the future.

2. a plan of operations based on such an estimate.

3. an itemized allotment of funds, time, etc., for a given period.

4. the total sum of money set aside or needed for a purpose: the construction budget.

5. a limited stock or supply of something: his budget of goodwill.

6. Obsolete. a small bag; pouch.



7. reasonably or cheaply priced: budget dresses.


–verb (used with object)

8. to plan allotment of (funds, time, etc.).

9. to deal with (specific funds) in a budget.


–verb (used without object)

10. to subsist on or live within a budget.


A lot of choices, but I like to use choices #4 and #8. Sure, budgeting usually talks about money, but many young people have no money (actually, you have more than you think, but that’s another story). So what do they budget? Time is a good answer.

I talk with kids everyday who tell me how there isn’t enough time in the day for them to get everything they need done. Surprisingly, I agree with them to a large extent. Out of 168 total hours in a week, Kids today have:

  • Thirty hours of school (give or take).
  • Ten or more hours of practice for sports.
  • Another ten or more hours of music practice or other extra-curricular activities.
  • Twenty-five hours or thereabouts of homework.
  • Fifty-six hours needed for sleeping

If you’ve done the math, you are left with 37 hours a week to do everything else! Realistically, kids do exactly what adults do when faced with these kinds of numbers. They give up on stuff. They’ll cut down on time spent on homework, or they’ll cut back on sleep. Some of my juvenile hall students skip out on time spent in school.

I believe Petronius said, “Moderation in all things, including moderation”. I had no idea who Petronius was before researching the quote, but I’ve heard many versions by many people, including Mark Twain. Wherever it originated, good advice is good advice. Take steps to budget your time so that you can do what is important to you, and your parents, without feeling like you are running yourself ragged. The practice will help you when you have to build budgets for other things, like money.

  1. Like your income, there is a finite amount of time in a day, a week, or a month. You have to work within that framework.
  2. Just like expenses for food, medicine, and others that are not flexible, there are some time sinks that are unchangeable. You have to budget out realistic sleep time, realistic school and homework time, and some padding to allow for transition between activities.
  3. Plan ahead. When working with money budgets, sometimes you have to wait and save to buy things, especially big-ticket items like houses, cars, and big vacations. Want to go see a concert? Make sure you get your report on World War II done before.
  4. Finally, MODERATE! Don’t get hung up on budgeting every single second of your day. Leave some wiggle room for some of those spontaneous things that pop up. You don’t want to miss out on a great experience because you have your day planned out such that you can’t change.

So, the point is, don’t over-budget your time so that you miss out on great experiences, but also don’t waste your time.



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