Teaching your kids to invest at an early age - the importance of building wealth early

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Family 2.jpgNo one says they wish they had started investing later in life. The younger you are, the more time you have to let your money grow. Setting up an investment for your child might already be in your plan, but more and more, kids are taking an interest in investing themselves. These Dad’s have made investing a family affair by teaching their children how important it is to start building wealth at a young age.

Hannes Pieterse believes it’s important that his children, Jayden (7) and Tiffany (5), understand the value of money and remembers when his own father helped him understand the benefits of investing. “I will never forget my dad buying me my first shares when I was 10 years old. The objective was easy; he said to find a share valued at under 30c (in those days there were plenty), so I picked one which cost me 17c a share. In Matric I sold it back to him to buy myself a racing bike.”

Hannes has opened an EasyEquities Tax Free Savings Account for both his children and within it, has invested in bundles (a managed collection of exchange traded funds) created by Emperor Asset Management, which are based on aggressive risk strategies. “It’s for them one day when they finish school,” says Hannes. “ I also gave them each R100 to invest in their normal EasyEquities investment account. Tiffany used hers to buy shares in a ‘cell phone’ (MTN) and Jayden invested in a ‘goldmine’ (Sibanya).”

Bradley Leather, father of Giorgia (10) and Ethan (12), says his kids understand the basics of investing and are both shareholders in Purple Group. “I have explained to them the importance of investing for the future i.e. either spend x amount of Rands on a cell phone which will be worthless in a number of years or, invest that money in the market which will be worth much more over time.

“It’s so important for them to start young,” Brad adds. “They have time on their side and historically the equities market has outperformed all asset classes over a long term period.”

Tristan (18), Kirra (16) and Mika (7) are also shareholders, who have learnt about investing from their father, Charles Savage. Tristan explains, “When I was 12 my dad said I could either have a phone or money and explained that if I took money and used it to buy shares it would increase in value and eventually I’d be able to buy 2 phones or more with that money. The same thing happened on my 18th birthday. I could either get a car, or money to invest. I chose to invest and watched that money grow. I love the hype when the company you’ve invested in goes up in value, it’s a pretty cool feeling.”

Charles believes his kids are at a perfect stage in their lives to start investing. “Everybody wants a wealthy, healthy retirement but they see investing their money as a risk. The real risk isn’t the fact that you’ll lose money along the way, it is that you won’t make enough to afford that retirement. When you’re young you can afford to take bigger risks, which potentially means much bigger returns.”

“You’ve got to think about the fact that you are helping yourself long term,” says Tristan. “Start with a little bit and keep going.”