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Long term investment for your child’s future isn’t always about money.

Setting our kids up for the future is one of the biggest concerns most parents have. We all spend time worrying about what’s ahead for them and how they'll survive. As a parent or grandparent, we can also spend time thinking about what might be the right investments for our children’s future.

From disproportionately large housing prices, to world pandemics and artificial intelligence, it’s often mind blowing contemplating what our kids might encounter as they mature.

The idea of investing for our children’s future in Australia tends to make us think of putting aside money so they have a nice nest egg to get them started. It’s common for our mind to head towards things like savings accounts as being the most important investment for our children.

But, in actual fact, the best investment for children isn’t a sizable inheritance. Ensuring they have the skills they’ll need to function and thrive in their future world will set them up for life. Regardless of the size of their trust fund.

Parents should consider other ways to invest in their child’s future. Yes, a little financial helping hand for the kids will likely always be a goal for most parents. But there are other ways to make long term investments for your child too.

Here’s 10 reasons to make alternative ways to invest in your children’s future a priority:

1. Education is important

Providing your children with the best education possible is becoming increasingly important for parents. This can often mean as parents, you’ll be spending more during their formative years to set them up for future prosperity.

While private education and post-school studies can be expensive, there are ways to ease the burden. Consider Education Bonds as a great way to prepare early for the significant cost of quality education.

As well as providing you with a staggered and planned approach to ensuring you’ve got the funds, they can also be a tax effective and flexible way to guarantee this crucial investment for your child.

2. Develop healthy habits

Developing healthy habits from an early age is one of the best ways to invest in your children’s future. Healthy habits are essential for both kids and adults to thrive.

Start out by setting boundaries that encourage your kids to get plenty of sleep, eat healthily and be active. And that means lots of time away from devices.

Try making being healthy fun too. Cook healthy meals together, go for a family bike ride or get outside and kick a ball.

3. Teach them to be responsible with money

In this cashless world, most kids have very little appreciation for the value of money. Without learning some basic financial literacy, when let loose in the real world, our children have the potential to sink rather than swim.

And that little nest egg we spoke about early could quickly disappear, with very little to show for it.

Teaching your children some basic budgeting skills develops a habit in your child to not waste money and to respect its value. You may also like to share with them some of the investments for children to help their savings grow.

4. Get your kids to do chores

Learning they need to contribute to how your family functions, is one of the most valuable tools a child can have up their sleeve. From washing up to mowing the lawn or making their bed. These simple everyday tasks pack their punch in life lessons.

Not only will you be teaching them the value of hard work, but they’ll also understand the power of collaborating to get things done. Many hands make light work.

5. Encourage environmental responsibility

Hopefully, environmental responsibility in the younger generations will become second nature. Start with the obvious like recycling at home.

But also consider getting your kids involved with local community efforts and projects. That way they’ll learn it’s a broader responsibility for everyone, not just in the home. Consider this one a long term investment for your child and future generations too.

6. Read everyday for success

Literacy plays a big part in your child’s development. It’s the foundation for so many things. Doing well at school, socialising with others, problem-solving, making decisions, developing independence, managing money, and working.

Plus it gives them endless opportunities for escapism in this sometimes crazy world. Starting their daily reading habits early is a good indicator for future success.

7. Sign them up for sport or group activities

The power of teamwork and being able to function within a team is a valuable skill. And it can be learned fairly organically. Being involved in a team or group structure in a way that’s fun, interesting and they enjoy is a simple way to learn about teamwork.

8. Encourage creative pursuits

Creative activities including music help your child to develop their thinking skills. It lets them try out new ideas and new ways of thinking, without fear of making mistakes.

Plus getting the right side of the brain into gear is great for skills like problem solving, generating new ideas and original thinking.

9. Get social

Socialising lets your children learn to communicate with others outside of their family. Realising that others may do things differently and not everyone’s the same is important. Plus it helps them understand risk-taking, social cues, and how to listen and understand others.

10. Let them get bored

In our kids’ overscheduled lives, there’s not much true downtime. But giving your kids the opportunity to get bored (yes, that means no devices) is a sure-fire way to get the brain ticking over and the creative juices flowing.

So while they might drive you to distraction for a while, stick with it. And before long you’ll start noticing the magic that happens when they’re given the space to let their minds wander.

One step at a time

The great news is all of these things can become part of your everyday life, without it costing a fortune or taking up every spare minute of your day.

While we’d all love to secure our kids' futures, it’s pretty much impossible to achieve, if they don’t have the skills they need to do it themselves.

It’s about habit building. Which is one of the best investments for your children you can make. So if merging these things into your already full life seems impossible, remember one step at a time. Focusing on providing them with the best education possible is a good place to start.

And we’re here to support you to ensure they get the quality education they need to set them up for life.