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Don't follow in our footsteps - 'be sensible with your money'

21st March 2011 Print

Research conducted amongst parents by Triodos, the ethical bank, shows that parents are keen to ensure values such as sound money sense and ethical behaviour are passed down to their children. Facing a lack of personal finance education in schools, over three quarters (78%) of parents are teaching their children to be sensible with their money, making it the number one principle parents want to instil in their children.

Other principles which parents would like to encourage in their children are to be polite and well-mannered (76%), and to dedicate time (23%) and money (19%) to good causes.

Parents are also keen for their children to be socially and environmentally aware. One  in three (33%) parents say they are keen to ensure their children put savings and investments to positive use, while other ethical values such as recycling and cutting down on food wastage are high on parents' priority lists. 

Triodos Bank's Values + Rewards research also highlights how parents have changed their behaviour since having children, with 44 per cent putting their advice into practice and being more sensible with their money. Parents have also grown more ethically and environmentally conscious since having children, with over a quarter (27%) recycling more or reducing their energy usage (15%) and 4 per cent have started saving with a more ethical bank.

Huw Davies, Head of Personal Banking at Triodos Bank, said: "While parents themselves have made some changes to their financial and environmental behaviour since having children, they clearly feel an even stronger duty to pass these values on to their children.

"It's great to see so many parents keen to teach their kids about putting their savings to positive use. Our savings accounts, both for children and for adults, are set up to provide competitive financial rewards whilst ensuring savers' money makes a tangible difference to a range of worthwhile organisations in their area."

Putting children's savings to positive use

As well as taking on board the financial education of their children, the figures from Triodos Bank reveal that more than one in four (29%) parents and one in five grandparents (20%) are already saving for their children in the hope of securing a better financial position for their future. Triodos Bank's research also shows that one in six parents (17%) say that their children are already saving for themselves.

Considering that one in ten (11%) of adults have not changed banks since their parents first set them up with a bank account, the decisions parents make for their child's first savings account are vital. Triodos therefore urges parents to think carefully about the bank they choose for their children and ensure it is a bank they trust will nurture their children's financial development.
Triodos offer a Right Start Saver, an easy access children's account paying 0.8% which can be opened with as little as £1. With Right Start Saver, as with all of Triodos Bank's accounts, savers' deposits will be used exclusively to fund organisations helping to make the world a better place and via the website children, parents and grandparents can see the projects their deposits are helping finance. Current Triodos projects include the solar PV installation at Glastonbury's Worthy Farm, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's businesses, Mulberry-fashion founder Roger Saul's business among many other sustainable enterprises.