5 online resources to help get parents smarter about money

i-a578fa89ca07794fb3f95553930d85bf-pbwc.jpg When it comes to teaching our kids about money, we’ve learned that the most effective–and easiest–trick is teach by example. In other words, the better example we can set for them, the more prepared they’ll be to tackle their own budgets and spending as they get older. And while your kids may not be ready for the “this is how a credit card works” talk, even toddlers can start to understand the value of a dollar. Or a quarter.

(Boy it’s tough to explain that a piece of green paper is worth more than a shiny coin!)

So we couldn’t be more thrilled to be teaming up again with BMO Harris Bank, who’s asked us to share some of our favorite finance websites that we use ourselves–not only keep our own budgets in order, but to get advice and support for being better money managers ourselves, so that our kids will be too.

1. Daily Worth
The fabulous, well-written, fun (really) website Daily Worth offers smart financial tips tailored just for women, and sent to your inbox every single day. Their free emails will help empower you to make smart, sound financial decisions without making you feel stupid, something I know we all appreciate. The site itself is also an amazingly helpful resource — easily searchable by topic if you’ve got specific questions. Search “children” and you’ll learn how to calculate a baby fund, action plans for college savings, and even a great column on how to spend and save when you’re a single mom.

2. Mint.com
While this hugely popular website and app provide you with a simple way to track all your financial accounts, Mint.com also gives members helpful tips. Check out the blog in particular, to find everything from ways to earn cash back by switching credit card, to frugal foodie tips for healthy foods your kids will still like. We also appreciate the handy notifications that alert you when you’ve gone over your monthly clothes budget. (Or clothes budget for your kids?)

3. LearnVest
We just love this female-founded company, also geared toward women. Here, members get free diagnosis of spending habits, access to financial bootcamps, and daily financial advice and tips, many of which are perfect for parents. But what’s even cooler is that you can also get your finances in order with their handy My Money Center. If you think you need a little more help about something specific, like paying down your credit card bills or getting investment guidance so your kids can head to college, you can pay a fee for one of three different budgeting plans.

4. Wise Bread
If you like the idea of living more frugally, but without wading through all the affiliate links and blinking ads that often appear on coupon-type blogs, this is the site for you. It’s a clean, navigable online community that feels more like a magazine. Myriad columns hit topics ranging from different ways you can use nail polish to tips on how to teach your kids about money (hey!). You’ll find a plethora of useful information, as well as a well-curated section for deals, coupon codes, and online discounts. Definitely worth a bookmark.

5. Buxfer
Similar to Mint.com, Buxfer allows you to manage all your financial accounts anytime, anywhere. However, what we really like is how you can join using Google Gears, so all your info is stored on your own computer and not via a third party cloud service–which still makes some people uncomfortable. Additionally, you can keep track of shared expenses, which is brilliant for families with joint accounts. And of course, for families with teens that might have access to those joint accounts.

Our huge thanks to BMO Harris Bank for underwriting this post. We love any excuse to provide helpful tips to our readers. Learn more from BMO Harris Bank to help your kids understand the value of money.




Cool Mom Staff

We spend our time looking for cool stuff so you don't have to. Hope this one fits the bill.

1 Comment

  • Reply March 26, 2012

    Jackie

    Thanks for this list. I am a huge fan of Daily Worth as well as Wise Bread, but I haven’t explored these other sites much.

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