Talking to Your Teens about Taxes

“Mom, why do they take some much money off my pay cheque for this thing called taxes??”

As mentioned in a previous post, my son graduated high school in June, but decided to take a gap year to work before heading to post secondary. This year has been a huge learning curve and full of lessons for him as he is making his own money and purchasing things with his own money as well as taking on the responsibility of paying the monthly payment of his car insurance for his vehicle (which was a graduation present). While learning the value of a dollar, he has come to realize that money does not grow on trees and there is not an endless supply. Oh, the days of $5 here and $20 there from the Bank of Mom and Dad have come and gone. He has come to realize what is a want and what is a need and really does not like to part with his money. I think he likes the look of the dollar value in his bank account. 😉

So lets get back to the question posed earlier…’Mom, Why do they take some much money off my pay cheque for taxes?’ Yes, my boy, have you heard that phrase.

There are 2 certains in life…death and taxes

Tax, by definition means:

An amount of money that you have to pay to the government so that it can pay for public services. What are public services?..The local police force, firefighters, health care, social programs and services and yes, the wages of our elected officials, local, provincial and federal just to name a few.

So I sat down with my son to give a brief over view (a chalk talk, per se. If I use a sport analogy, it might sound more interesting ;)) of what taxes are and what they are used for, why we all have to pay them and once he gets his tax slips, we will sit down and go over how to prepare a tax return. Even if he get older and has someone else do them, he should still understand the process. But that got me to thinking, why do they not teach this to students in school? Yes, I know even when I went to school in the ‘olden days’, I do not believe they taught us taxes or money matters information. But really is school not a place to help prepare these kids for the future and what better way to prepare them is to help them understand taking care of your money and taxes. I am guessing most people will earn some sort of wage in life and will need to understand how to use that money effectively. But how many people will continue to use quadratic equations, trigonometry or need to know how to calculate the hypotenuse of a right angle !!

Am I right?

So by having the conversation, it has sparked other interest in money matters. Investing and how to make you money work for you. Well that might be another blog post.

I am glad in a way that my son had taken this year off to learn a few practical life lessons as I think this will bode him well in the years to come.

Maybe this tax talk should be include in our teen talk repertoire such as the other three letter word ending in X :). LOL!


3 thoughts on “Talking to Your Teens about Taxes

    1. Thank you Robin. I know it was an unusual post. But does get you thinking and life lessons and teens.
      The other three letter word ending in ‘X’. LOL!!

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