Teaching Financial Literacy

Americans are lacking basic financial knowledge and they know it. 40% of the Americans polled by the NFCC admitted they would grade their understanding of financial topics average; C’s, D’s, and sometimes even assigning themselves F’s. So, we know we don’t have the knowledge we need to make sure our future, and the future of our children, is secure. And we also know the topics that people need to learn in order to be more financially responsible. Now, the question is, what can we do to improve the level of knowledge in our country?

Don't let your money fly away! Follow these steps!

Don’t let your money fly away! Follow these steps!

Teach It in Schools

Almost all of the Americans polled (85%) said they believed passing basic courses in basic household finance should be a requirement for graduation from high school. This would make a huge difference in the knowledge of our nation and should be considered by the Department of Education on a federal level.

Set Up a Budget

No matter what your income, it is imperative that you at least track how much you spend on a monthly and yearly basis. Little transactions add up and sometimes this is hard to see; kind of like the opposite of the classic adage, you miss the forest for the trees, in this case, you see the forest but can’t figure out where it came from! If you are looking down the barrel of a huge credit card bill each month and can’t figure out why, take some time to catalogue everything you spend. Take a look at what your daily habits are and try and save here and there. A classic example comes in a cup. Buying a cup of coffee every day seems like it would be pretty innocuous, hey, it’s just 3 or 4 bucks, right? Well, that 3 or 4 bucks adds up over the course of a week, month and especially a year. Four dollars a day becomes a little over one thousand dollars over the course of a year. I bet you could find a better use for that $1,000, don’t you?

Educate Yourself

Banks hold free seminars from time to time on the topic of financial literacy. Go and listen on night. Borrow a book about the basics of household finance from the library and read through. Take notes and implement the strategies discussed in the book for at least a month before you decide if they work for you!

You Can Do It

Everyone deserves the chance to retire and take care of their families without having to worry about living paycheck to paycheck. The great news is, with careful planning, dedication, and a little bit of financial knowledge, everyone can!