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What kind of pocket money parent are you?

How do you feel about talking to your kids about money? Are you relaxed and comfortable about pocket money conversations? Or do you avoid the topic and hope they’ll forget about it - or at least leave it for another day?

Australian parents recognise that having a pocket money system helps children learn financial skills for the future, but they vary in their attitudes in talking about money with their children.

Why should you talk to your kids about pocket money?

Talking about money helps kids understand

Whether pocket money is given automatically or earned from doing chores around the home, it helps children understand the key concepts of money management.  They will need these skills when they enter the workforce, first leave home or need to set a budget.

Research shows that Australian parents fall into four different ‘money parent personality’ types that vary from being relaxed and engaged in conversations about money with their children to those who worry and avoid the topic.^

Which money parent personality are you?

A 2018 survey of Australian parents with children aged between 4 and 18 showed ‘money parent personalities’ reflect the way parents felt about money and how they subsequently talk about money with their children.

Take a look at the following four categories and work out which group you might belong to!

  • Engagers (30%) have high household income and are generous with pocket money for their kids. If you’re an Engager, you’ll be happy to talk to your kids about money and see the benefits of using pocket money to encourage good behaviour and teach solid financial skills.
  • Avoiders (29%) are not comfortable talking to their kids about money and give them the least pocket money compared to the other groups.
    Children of Avoiders are the least interested in learning about money and many become unprepared for money management in today’s digital world.
  • Relaxed parents (22%) generally have low financial stress and are happy to talk to their kids about money – but not very often.
    Children of Relaxed parents are left to find out about money through their own experiences and may miss opportunities for learning essential money management skills.
  • Troopers (19%) tend to have smaller families and talk to their kids about money, but they’re uncomfortable about having those conversations.
    Worrying about money themselves, Troopers don’t want their children to worry about money as well. They encourage their teenagers to get a job.

Whatever your ‘money parent personality’, you’ll recognise that the world your children are moving into is changing. With a growing trend towards digital money management, children need to keep up, in order to be ready for their own financial independence.

Should you encourage your kids to learn about money?

Encourage curious kids for digital money management

Preparing your children to be financially savvy by practising good money management habits starts with pocket money. Whether you are an Engager, an Avoider, a Trooper or just Relaxed about money matters, your children will be looking for ways to earn, save and spend money.

Try these tips from the Engagers, who:

  • Have used money to incentivise and encourage good behaviour in their children
  • Include their children in household discussions about money
  • Let children make supervised online purchases for the family
  • Are comfortable for their children to know about their earnings

Do their attitudes impact their children? Preparing for the future world of invisible money, Engagers’ children are:

  • More curious, confident and financially literate than their parents were at the same age
  • More equipped to understand and transact in today’s digital money world
  • More likely to have a job and understand the relationship between work and money

What other ways can I teach my kids good money management through pocket money?

Learn about saving, spending and budgeting with ZAAP

Your kids can easily learn more about pocket money management and digitisation of money using ZAAP, the leading-edge digital pocket money tool that is designed for learning, earning, saving and spending in the world of digital payments.

Whatever your money parent personality, ZAAP is the pocket money app for the digital age that can help you start the conversation with your child about essential money management skills.

Visit the website at zaap.com.au to find out how ZAAP makes pocket money a learning experience to equip children with better money management skills.


^Share the Dream research report is based on a national quantitative survey of 1,003 Australian parents with children aged between 4 and 18. Conducted in June 2018 for the Financial Planning Association of Australia.