• Financially Fit: Keep Your Kids on Track

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    In today’s “Money Mondays” segment, Mellody Hobson talks about a very important topic: preparing kids to be financially responsible adults.

    This week, I came across a poll from late last year that found that 27% of 17-year-olds do not feel they have the financial intelligence they need to manage their finances by the time they graduate, 49% of teens feel clueless about money management, and fully 90% of teen respondents said they’re not learning everything they need to know about money management. These are mind-blowing numbers that tell us we are sending our kids into the world unprepared for the deluge of financial decisions that awaits them.

    What are these kids facing out there?

    By sending high school graduates into the world without a solid understanding of their personal finances, and the benefits and consequences that can come with it, we make it more difficult for them to build a solid financial future. Take student loans, which I talk about so often. If young people don’t understand what these loans will mean for them once they are out of school, they could be in for a nasty surprise. Paying for a comfortable college lifestyle with loans could mean thousands of extra dollars they have to pay back later. And you cannot get rid of student loan debt, even in bankruptcy! Credit cards are the same way. If young people don’t know the consequences ahead of time, they can dig a big hole very quickly, and it could be difficult to get out of. So it is imperative that we catch these kids at an early age and prepare them for what is to come!

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