A great Dane named Hamlet once lamented that age old question: "To work, or not to work?" Oh, wait, that's not exactly how it went. Um, anyway, all fuzzy college lit aside, today we're giving allowances a bit more attention. Back in March, I touched on allowances when talking about savings and kids. Today, we're looking at the pros and cons of different allowance strategies.

Two Schools of Thought

If you ever bought something cheap that turned out to be junk, I bet you were sorely disappointed in the quality. That great deal on scrap roofing material may have landed you, literally, in the doghouse, or the reason behind that excellent price on a used car may have become apparent when you broke down on the freeway.

Whatever the case, when you find an unbelievable deal on anything, it is often too good to be true. Broker junk bonds are no exception. Let's take a look at this trick in the bond world.

What is a Junk Bond?

I am exceedingly glad parenting does not require a degree in spaceship engineering, especially when it comes to kids and finances.  With support from your spouse, extended family and good friends as well as the vastness that it is the world wide web, teaching kids about money and savings takes little more than the two C's: common sense and consistency. 

Earlier in our Relationships and Finance series, we touched on “How to Help Your Spouse See You as a Financial Equal.” In the post, we discussed education, discussion, timely communication and planning as ways to open your financial plan to a joint venture. We laid out the basics and promised to come back to each idea more in depth, and today, we are going to take a look at education as a means to developing a better financial relationship with your spouse.

Teaching your children to invest is a very noble goal, and it can be as hard and serious or as fun and easy as you want to make it. Financial planning is a life-long process, and the sooner they get a grip on it, the better. So, what can you do to help prepare you children to invest properly? I suggest doing a little gardening project at home.

There was never a doubt in my mind that I would go to college. My mom drilled it into my head so much that I was a little flabbergasted by friends who decided to forego the undergraduate experience. Why would anyone decide to skip college? I thought a university education was the only way to get ahead.

Now, older (and wiser? — that’s still up for debate), I see that many of the friends who decided not to attend college don't seem to have paid much of a price for their decision. Their life looks awfully similar to mine, and they don’t earn a lick less than I do.

I'll never forget the fun, lovable characters from the Baby-sitters Club book series. Kristy, Claudia, Stacy—we all had a favorite. If you’re not familiar with the series, what those witty adolescents did was form a club of babysitters. Then they capitalized upon each others' strengths to help them make it through the trials and tribulations of three things: being a teenager, being a babysitter, and making money.

It’s amazing how perceptive children are: they can tell when money gets tight, and they know when you have a spare $20 in your purse. With their perception and spongy minds, children as young as four can begin to learn concepts of saving. Of course, children of different ages learn about money differently, so let’s break down savings concepts by age groups.