Being a teenager can be hard work, but for a parent the job can be even harder. If you’ve got a child between the ages of 15 and 19, it’s likely you’ll know what I’m on about; if your child is under this age, then you’ll have it all to look forward to! Gone are their childhood days of “I want this” or “I want that” – instead you’ll be hearing a lot of “can I borrow money, I’ll pay you back next weekend!”. And we’d all love to believe it, but teens simply have other priorities that generally don’t involve reimbursing the bank of mum and dad.
Relatively small “loans” such as these is something that every parent becomes used to, but there are sometimes bigger payments that you might not have been saving for. Being aware of some of these may help as you could start to make contingency plans such as opening another savings account. Extra cash could be generated by your teen getting themselves a job, or even sorting out their bedroom as you can now sell all sorts of things online; this way you’ll simply be helping them to pay for it rather than funding the entire cost. Anyway, here are a few things you might be roped into helping them buy…
Car or Car Repair
Your teen’s first car is unlikely to be the soundest investment in the world, but it is a chance to get them to improve their confidence on the road. Unfortunately cars can be quite expensive when they’ve experienced years of wear and tear, especially when they need work done to pass their MOTs. In some cases, it might even be necessary to buy a new (second or third hand) car if their first motor just won’t do the job any longer.
There are many types of insurance around, but your teen is most likely to have car insurance and mobile phone cover. For a young driver, car insurance can be very expensive so you may be asked to help cover the cost. Recommend that they try using comparison websites or seeking specialist young driver insurers to reduce the overall price somewhat.
A common one in my household is helping my son with his mobile phone bill. Even my pre-teen daughter asks for credit for her PAYG phone, but my son manages to overspend every month! My top tip here would be to restrict data when abroad as background apps can use a lot of it. My son is currently working a part time job to pay me back (bit by bit)…
Everyone knows that university fees can be pricey, but consider all the other expenses too. There is rent, food, bills, transportation, leisure – the list is seemingly endless. If your kids want to go to university, it’s never too early to sit down with them to decide how everything will get funded.
House Party Repairs
Finally; house parties. Have you ever gone away for a night or two only to return to a messy house? Your teen might not be the type, but make sure you know what they’re going to be getting up to whilst you’re away or you might end up coming back to a pricey clean-up.