My son has the awesome Digital Football Coin Bank. He uses it to collect and count “spare change”. A couple of months ago, he and his grandfather started a contest – to see who could be the first to collect $100. My son won. Handily.
So, building on his new found enthusiasm for saving money, I asked him if he wanted to open his own online savings account. He’s seven – so you already know, his answer was, “YES!”
The account is super-simple to open. All I had to do was log in to my account, click the link to open a new account, enter some basic information (my son’s name, social, etc.), and fund the new account. In less than five minutes, he was set.
Our account is connected to our local bank for transfers. When he needs to make a deposit into his account, he’ll simply give me cash. I’ll then deposit it in my local checking account – and then transfer the amount to ING.
I created a simple spreadsheet to help him keep up with his cash, coins, and balance. Explaining how “giving” me $20 didn’t mean that he was “losing” $20 took a few minutes. I even created a little drawing, showing him, our local bank, and his bank.
Hopefully, watching the balance in his new account will encourage him to save even more. (Our daughter was ten when we opened her savings account at a local bank. I think having an older sister, who regularly makes deposits into her account, really served as a good example for our son. Also, now that the online account is so easy to open, we’ll be moving my daughter’s money to a new account, too.)