First Person: My 14-Year-Old Daughter, the Saver

Yahoo Contributor Network

Today's kids are a different breed entirely. With the current electronics trend growing by the day, things can get quite expensive. About 10 years ago, my daughters joined the electronics trend. They had to have everything, from the newest cell phone, to the coolest laptop.

I have always been happy to give my daughters the things in life that they desire. They are not spoiled, these expensive gifts come with a price. They have always been expected to do well in school, and maintain a decent grade average. I am lucky to be able to say, that they have always done exactly that.

Although they have been great at keeping their grades up, they have had short attention spans with their new electronics. Usually, after a few months, they grow restless, and start looking for the next best cell phone, or laptop.

Over the 10 years or so, I have spent thousands of dollars on this stuff. Besides simply wanting the newest trending piece of equipment, they have also had a problem with slippery hands. Many times they have dropped their cell phone, or run it through the wash. I put up with the carelessness for a while, but eventually had enough. After several broken phones, laptops, and video game systems being broken, and replaced as if they were growing off of trees in the back yard, I put my foot down, and informed them all that I would no longer be replacing this stuff when it breaks.

At first, it didn't go over well because it was almost like I was breaking my promise to supply these things in exchange for hard work and good grades at school. The reality of the situation was that, although their grades were good, something was missing: The value of a dollar.

After about a year, my youngest daughter got tired of trying to work me over, and get me to buy more electronics and she started to focus on other ways to obtain them. She decided she was going to have her own yard sale to try and sell some of her used electronics.

She asked for permission, and I gladly said "sure, knock yourself out". She held a yard sale that Saturday, and sold old video games, old cell phones, an older laptop, and even some of her clothes she had out grown. She did the same thing on Sunday with the remaining things she had not sold the previous day.

By the end of the weekend, not only had she cleaned out some of her old unwanted stuff, she had made enough to buy herself a new notebook laptop, that at the time was selling for around $275. As soon as my older daughters got wind of this, they too sold their old electronics and got a new video game system, and cell phones.

Since then they have taken better care of these things, and continue to trade and sell these items on their own, saving me around $1,000 per year. Best of all, they have learned the value of a dollar. My only regret, is not figuring this system out years ago.

*Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Do you have a personal finance story that you'd like to share? Sign up with the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own finance articles.

Rates

View Comments