If you’re a mother, you’ll probably get some nice cards and flowers on Mother’s Day. Of course the greatest gifts are your children themselves and since you want to see them happy and financially secure, perhaps you can use this Mother’s Day as an opportunity to consider ways to help your children at various stages of their lives.
So, let’s take a look at a few steps:
When children are young
Help them become savers — Encourage young children to put away part of their allowance, or any money they receive for household jobs, in a savings account. Offer to match their contributions dollar for dollar.
Help them become investors — Consider giving your children a few shares of stock. By following the movements of their stocks with them, you can explain how the markets work and how increasing share ownership is one key to helping build wealth.
Contribute to a college savings plan — One of the best things you can do to boost your children’s chances of success in life is to help them go to college. You’ve got several good college-savings vehicles available, such as a 529 plan, Coverdell Education Savings Accounts and custodial accounts.
When your children enter the working world
Encourage IRA contributions — An Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is a great retirement savings vehicle. As long as your children have earned income, they can contribute to an IRA.
While you can’t directly contribute to a child’s IRA, you can write a check to your child and encourage him or her to use it for funding an IRA.
Make long-term care arrangements — If you needed long-term care and you had inadequate financial preparations, the burden could fall on your children. Talk with a financial adviser about what options exist to mitigate this.
When your children reach middle age
Communicate your financial situation and estate plans — Don’t leave adult children in the dark as to your financial information. Share everything you can about how much you own, where you keep your assets and how you plan to distribute them. By clearly communicating your situation and wishes now, you can avoid major problems later.
Create a durable power of attorney — By creating a durable power of attorney, you can appoint another person, such as an adult child, to conduct your business and financial affairs if you become physically or mentally incapacitated.
Mother’s Day commemorates the special bond that mothers have with their children. By following the above suggestions, you can help strengthen that bond throughout your lifetime.
Ross Hage is a financial adviser with Edward Jones. For more information, call (928) 468-2281. This article was written by Edward Jones for use by your local Edward Jones financial adviser.