GOLDEN RULES

Marlborough Midweek - - OUT & ABOUT -

Raise chil­dren with self-con­trol Teach them how money works Help them find their ed­u­ca­tion suc­cess

Science shows chil­dren with self-con­trol grow into wealth­ier adults. Par­ents, it is your job to in­stil self­con­trol in your young ones. You also need to avoid rais­ing a lilyliv­ered nar­cis­sist who be­lieves they are owed some­thing by life. As young peo­ple who can’t af­ford homes are find­ing, the rest of the coun­try doesn’t feel it owes them an af­ford­able home. Rais­ing un­spoilt chil­dren is em­i­nently doable, so I’ll say 10/10.

I’ve met peo­ple who bankrupted them­selves to buy, or rent in the ‘‘right’’ school zone, or who spent their re­tire­ment sav­ings ca­pac­ity on pri­vate school­ing. The mes­sage is clear though: Chil­dren must suc­ceed in ed­u­ca­tion as in our mer­ci­less econ­omy the least­skilled work for peanuts on in­se­cure con­tracts. To have any chance of own­ing a home, chil­dren must be helped by their par­ents to achieve, whether to be­come a skilled tradie, or higher ed­u­ca­tion-trained pro­fes­sional. Takes time, and a lot of ef­fort. I’ll

SELF CON­TROL:

‘‘In our mer­ci­less econ­omy the least­skilled work for peanuts on in­se­cure con­tracts.’’

ED­U­CA­TION:

say 8/10.

KEEP THE STU­DENT DEBT DOWN:

We dan­gle mas­sive loans in front of 17 year-olds and ex­pect them to make ra­tio­nal de­ci­sions. It’s like we ‘‘grown-ups’’ all think we were mod­els of fi­nan­cial rec­ti­tude at 17! The re­sult is over 100,000 loans in de­fault. Call­ing the bor­row­ers traitors, id­iots, or bludgers isn’t help­ing. Par­ents, it is im­per­a­tive your chil­dren are ready to make the stu­dent loan de­ci­sion. By 17, they must be im­bued with the fi­nan­cial facts of life. Stu­dent loans must be kept small. That means study­ing from home, so you need to raise chil­dren you can bear to be around, and who can stand liv­ing with you. Op­ti­misti­cally, I’m go­ing for 6/10.

And now the big­gie. Par­ents, you may have thought it was tough enough to

ANEQUITY GIFT:

save the vast sums needed for your own re­tire­ment. Well, you now need, it seems, $50,000-$100,000 to help each of your chil­dren into a home. For many new par­ents the chance of that is 0/10. This is an ab­surd pres­sure for young par­ents to feel. We need a hous­ing mar­ket where or­di­nary hard­work­ing peo­ple can buy homes.

At least if par­ents man­age the first three, their chil­dren will be in a po­si­tion to make their way in the world when/if hous­ing san­ity re­turns, or move­some­where more af­ford­able.

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