Every year in April, National Financial Literacy Month is recognized to raise public awareness of the importance of financial literacy and maintaining smart money management habits.

At Bank of the Rockies, we take financial literacy seriously for all of our customers, from youngest to oldest. Creating a better financial future is an essential task for everyone.

In fact, every year, we take four of our area’s top students to tour the Federal Reserve in Helena, Montana. We also participate in Teach Children to Save, a personal finance program that encourages children to develop saving habits early in life.

Whether you are young or old, earning a lot or a little, it’s crucial to develop good financial habits to ensure that you are on the right path toward financial success.

Here are three important money habits that can help you create a better financial future for yourself, starting when you’re young.

1. Saving: Money Does Grow, but Not on Trees

It’s never too early to start saving money, and kids can benefit greatly from learning this important habit early on. Encouraging kids to save money can help them develop important financial skills and learn the value of money.

One way to help kids save is to set up a savings account for them and encourage them to regularly deposit a portion of their allowance or any money they receive as gifts. Another way is to teach them to set goals for what they want to save for, whether it’s a toy or a bigger purchase, and to work towards that goal by saving a little bit each week or month.

Here are a few more ways you can teach children to save:

  • Save 50 cents a day in loose change
  • Drink one less soda each day
  • Bring lunch to school
  • Eat out two fewer times a month
  • Buy store brands instead of name brands
  • Use free instead of paid apps and games on devices
  • Conserve gas by sharing rides with friends

2. Learning: The More You Learn, the More You Earn

Preparing for college or trade school is a crucial step for children who aspire to achieve financial success in their future. By investing time and effort into their studies, children can earn a degree or certification that can significantly increase their earning potential throughout their lifetime.

College and trade school graduates, on average, earn higher salaries than those without degrees or certifications and have access to a wider range of job opportunities. By pursuing higher education, children can open doors to financial stability and a brighter future.

3: Prioritizing: Know the Difference Between Needs and Wants

Budgeting is a crucial aspect of financial planning, and it involves allocating money toward different categories of expenses. One of the most important decisions that you must make while budgeting is to prioritize needs over wants.

Needs refer to expenses that are essential for today, such as food, housing, transportation, and healthcare, while wants are non-essential expenses that add to our comfort and enjoyment, such as entertainment, dining out, or travel.

When creating a family budget, it is crucial to prioritize needs over wants and allocate funds accordingly. Discussing and including the whole family in these decisions can make a budget even more effective.

Let Us Be Your Partner

We understand that creating a bright financial future requires intentional effort. Developing a budget, saving consistently, and making a commitment to higher education all require discipline and sacrifice, but the long-term benefits are worth it.

At Bank of the Rockies, we are ready to provide you with the tools and resources you need to succeed! Call one of our offices or reach out online today.