There’s never been a more important time than now to teach kids about money . Your children are soaking up life lessons everyday, so wouldn’t you want them to learn the importance of saving at a young age? Helping your child open a savings account can set them up for a lifetime of good stewardship. While it only takes a few minutes to open a savings account for your child, you’ll likely give them one of the most valuable lessons in money that they’ll ever learn. How to Open a Savings Account for Your Child Children under the age of 18 are not able to sign legal documents. This means that a teenager cannot simply walk into a bank and open an account without a guardian present. That’s why you’ll need to be present while opening a joint account – one that has both your name and your child’s name on it. The process of opening a joint savings account for your child is easy. You’ll need to make sure you and your child come prepared with the following information: Driver’s license Social Security Numbers (yours and child’s) Initial Deposit If you’re opening an account for an infant, be prepared to show a birth certificate. While an infant child may not need to be present at most banks, you will need to show proof of guardianship, so a birth certificate is essential. Consider an Online Bank Too Your children are probably tech savvy enough to surf the web, so the concept of online banking should be easy for them to comprehend. While it’s always good for them to learn how to use a brick and mortar bank, an online bank option could be convenient too. Consider an online bank like ING Direct or Ally if you’re looking for good rates and convenience. Visit Your Local Bank or Credit Union Many banks go the extra mile when it comes to opening a savings account for your child. There are some banks that encourage savings by giving away piggy banks for your child to use. They may also give a quick tour of the safe while giving a small lesson about saving money . Those things can really stand out to a young child and can spark their desire to save money in their bank account. Don’t forget to bring your child with you to the bank when you make deposits into your own account. That way, they’ll feel comfortable when it’s their turn to make a deposit into their savings account. Use account statements and deposit slips to reinforce basic math skills and to introduce them to the power of compound interest . Savings Accounts for College Once you’ve opened a basic savings account for your child, you might consider opening a 529 college savings account for them as well. Each state provides a 529 plan, which allows you to save and invest money that grows tax free for your child’s college education. The great part about these savings vehicles is that the money can be withdrawn tax-free as long as it is used for qualified higher education expenses such as tuition, room and board, books, and approved transportation. Always Encourage Your Child to Save If you aren’t excited to save, how can you expect your kids to be excited either? Be creative and enthusiastic about getting your child to save. If you have the means to match a certain percentage of their savings, go for it! If you can teach them to ‘pay themselves first,’ awesome! Always look for opportunities to encourage the principles of savings and your children’s lives will be impacted greatly because of it! Have you opened a savings account for your child? How do you encourage them to save? Related Articles: Open a high yielding savings account National City offers $150 gift card to open a checking account Where should you open an online bank account? Where To Open An Account on Bank Transfer Day Tim is a personal finance writer at Faith and Finance a Christian financial help blog that provides financial insights for individuals, businesses, and churches. Outside of finance, Tim enjoys spending time with his wife, playing the saxophone, reading economics books, and a good game of RISK or Catan. Find him on Twitter and Facebook .
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How to Open a Savings Account for a Child