Wednesday, March 31, 2010

TOS Crew: Family Mint

Our next port of call on this year's TOS Homeschool Crew Voyage is Family Mint. Family Mint is a money management website for families. It is a free service, which definitely helps with  the bottom line, and  fits right into my price point!!

So what exactly is Family Mint? It is a website designed to teach kids hands on money management skills.

With Family Mint your children will learn;

~Kids manage their own money, by setting goals and entering transactions.
~Kids Track  how they have made their money.
~Designate how much will go towards something they are saving for.

Parents motivate their children by;
~Setting Interest Rates
~Automating Allowance
~Matching Deposits (like a 401K)

So how do you achieve all of this?  Your family will start a 'virtual' bank. You will name the bank and you the parent will become the banker.

Your children will then each open up savings accounts with the family bank.
Now each dollar that is represented in this virtual bank, represents a real dollar that your child has earned.  He will make the deposit to you the banker. And it will be notated in their personal account.

The benefit of this is that the money isn't actually online, so it is not

susceptible to hackers. Family Mint is simply an accouting service. However, by using this program, it helps the parent and the child.

I don't know about you, but with 5 kids, I sometimes lose track of who made what amount of money, doing the various extra jobs around the house. This will help with that. I can go in and enter the transaction, or the children can enter the transaction, for me to approve. Also, when your children have saved money for quite a long time, and would like to withdraw it. That will be approved by the banker as well. So, if your child has been saving for a new bicycle, and decides he would like to go buy lunch for him and some buddies, you would have the ability to talk to them about that choice, before the hasty decision is made! I like that!

It also allows the child to really 'see' how much they have earned, and how much they have saved toward their goals. In this day and age of instant gratification, I think this is a very useful tool.

This is a free service, however, I think your children will learn some skills that will be priceless in their adult life. So many times, money management skills are simply not addressed. Family Mint helps you teach these valuable skills.

Please visit the crew blog to see what my crew mates have to say about Family Mint!

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