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Simple Money-Saving Tips For Teens

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Jelli

These simple money saving tips for teens will help your child take control of their finances and get to their goal quicker and easier. It’s all about creating a functional budget, having the right tools at your disposal, and practicing discipline throughout the process.

money saving tips for teens

What are some money saving tips for teens? Your child should set up a budget, restrict their spending, use online apps to track spending, define how they want to split out incoming income and work towards bringing in additional revenue streams.

When teens learn to manage finances from an early age, it essentials sets them up for life. Oftentimes, children grow up not knowing a thing about saving money and then spend most of their adult life playing catchup. Personally, I had a pretty rough start as a teen. I was offered my first credit card and ran to buy a 50-inch television with no place to put it. Then, I spent the next two years paying off the interest on the credit card and attempting to get out of debt. We don’t know what we were never told.

Teaching teens money-saving strategies and the understanding that spending has consequences really matters. Using these formative years to drill these concepts in is the best thing you can do as a parent or guardian.

teen save money fast

How can a teenager save money fast?

If your child wants to save money for a new phone or PS5, it will take some discipline and sacrifice. There are a few things to do to help with the process.

First, it’s important to set up specific goals and have a clearly defined plan in place regarding what they want to save and spend for the next few months. It’s not just about saying they want to “start saving” because that’s not structured enough to stick. What does your teen want to save?

  • 10% of every paycheck
  • $50 of every paycheck
  • the entire paycheck

Clearly mark out the parameters and then have your child stick to them.

This sacrifice will be hard at first, but once your child begins to see their savings grow, they will no longer find saving a burden! In fact, a complete mind-shift will take place once momentum starts picking up. Ask me how I know!!  

As you help your teen create a savings goal, they will automatically begin to restrict their spending. Saving and NOT spending go hand in hand.

Related: Goal Setting For Teens And How To Help Your Child Get Started

how to save money as a teen

Creating a budget

A budget keeps you focused and gives you a firm understanding of each month’s spending habits. Before I personally started a budget for my family, I had no clue what I spent every week and was SHOCKED to find out how much waste was flying out of my door after tallying up our official numbers.

When creating a budget, simply choose the categories you spend money on – consider entertainment, food, savings, and school. Then, define your spending rules. For example, 10% to each category? $50 to each category and everything else to savings? It’s up to you!

A standard is the 50/30/20 rule – which translates as 50% for essential expenses, 30% for non-essentials, and the remaining 20% goes to savings. Consider what works best for your teen because odds are he doesn’t have many essentials for the time being. The majority of their money should be going towards savings.

A budget doesn’t work unless you track your expenses! Budgeting is knowing where your money goes and then doing something useful with that knowledge, and unless you know where every single dollar goes, you won’t be able to make the right conclusions about which category can be tweaked or cut. It will require some time and effort but only at the beginning.

Use apps to help track money

You can do all of this and more with the Jelli App. My family has been enjoying using this app with our children and it’s been instrumental in helping them figure out how to divide up their money, set financial goals on their own, and watch their money grow.

jelli jars

It’s been wonderful to watch my two teens show such responsibility with their finances and see how differently the two decide to personally manage their holdings. My youngest doesn’t have anything he is saving for in particular. He just likes to have one big account that he accesses whenever out with friends.

My oldest daughter is saving for a gaming computer and puts 80% of all money she receives into a Jelli Jar – specifically designed for that purchase. With Jelli, categories are called Jars and you can fill those jars whenever you want. In fact, I can also contribute to her funds if she helps around the house. So, when I give her allowance, I can deposit it directly into her jar, making it seamless for everyone.

That’s such a perk for me! All family accounts are link. But it’s not just family accounts – you can link with ANYONE. So, if you have friends who have Jelli cards, add them to your list and enjoy the ability to transfer money to one another. Think about how easy that is while out dining or splitting a holiday gift. Love it!

With Jelli, when the children are out, they decide which jar they want to spend money FROM, giving them full control of their own finances. With every use of their Apple Pay/Jelli debit card, the app always asks which jar the debit should be pulled from. This knowledge enables them to really dissect their spending habits at the end of each day/week/month.

And just in case they ever run out of money, I could always quickly transfer money over to them to save the day. Not that we do that because I have two savers, but it’s a nice SAFETY to have.

how can teens earn money

How can teens earn money? 

There are many ways for teenagers to make money these days, with many options available right in your very home.

Related: 11 Ways for a Teen to Make $1000

Children can ask for allowances to do harder chores around the house. Yes, everyone should play a role in the upkeep in the home they live in, but there are duties that are beyond the normal day-to-day routine that could warrant a few extra dollars:

  • clean out the garage
  • clean out the basement
  • mop the floors
  • tidy up the attic
  • rearrange the closets
  • tidy up the linen closet
  • clean the oven
  • clean the refrigerator
  • rake leaves/shovel snow

Basically, everything that is on mom’s list, but just hasn’t had the time to get to yet!

Moving outside of the home, there is always the traditional roles that one would consider within the neighborhood:

  • babysitting
  • dog walking
  • tutoring
  • shoveling snow for neighbors
  • gardening for neighbors
  • grocery shopping for neighbors

Looking for something a bit more outside of the box? How about starting a vlogging channel? Nowadays, a lot of people make money by creating short educational, entertaining, or just relatable videos.

jelli visa card

What should I teach my teen to save money? 

If you are a parent of a teenager, there are a few key lessons that you should pass down regarding saving.

  • Emergency Funds – It’s important to teach your teens that while it’s great to save up for something fun and exciting, it’s always important to have an emergency fund for an unexpected life event.
  • Taxes – There are two things that everyone cannot avoid. We know the old slogan.
  • Car payments – Cars are fun to own, but there are so many other expenses that are associated with automobiles. Make sure they understand the full picture.
  • Investments – The greatest thing you can do for your teen is to get them excited about the stock market and investments. Teach them to save, but also teach them to take a portion of their money and invest when they can.
  • Retirement – Similar to investments, have them set up retirement funds at an early age, using products like ROTH IRAS. Imagine how much money they could have for retirement if they started investing at such an early age?

Keep the conversation going, always be available to chat when your teen needs you, and cheer every milestone accomplishment along the way! These money saving tips for your teen will help them go a long way with your help, and it will be so exciting to watch their savings journey.

The JelliCARD is issued by Metropolitan Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa USA, Inc. “Metropolitan Commercial Bank” and “Metropolitan” are registered trademarks of Metropolitan Commercial Bank © 2014. Use of the JelliCARD is subject to the terms and conditions of the applicable Cardholder Agreement and fee schedule.


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