As a grandparent, have you had “the talk” with your grandchildren about money and saving for the future? You might want to: a collaborative study conducted by MIT AgeLab and TIAA-CREF found that your grandchildren could be much more receptive to your money advice than are your own children. The study found that 73% of grandchildren respect their grandparents’ opinions, especially when it comes to saving and spending habits. Passing down your financial strategies can be as simple as sharing stories about how you saved for your first car or, perhaps even more instructively, what strategies you used to recover from a financial mistake/disaster. Here are some useful conversation starters:
- Share stories about how prices have changed in your lifetime.
- Introduce the idea of saving, not spending, a birthday money gift.
- Talk about the opportunities you received or missed out on because you had/did not have a good education.
- Listen to them. Ninety-seven percent of young adults in the intergenerational study acknowledged worrying about saving.
Beyond these conversation starters, you could also consult the TIAA-CREF site, which has worksheets and templates for incentives, and certificates to create agreements between grandparents and grandchildren to entice children to save for their futures. The tools were designed as part of AARP College Savings Solutions from TIAA-CREF, a program geared towards helping families save for college.