Make a resolution to take about finance as a family

As the New Year kicks in and people begin to count the cost of Christmas, money worries will prey on the minds of many families.

Children may be unaware of the tension that debt creates in the home, but families should discuss the topic rather than getting themselves into a spiral of loans that they can’t escape from, according to finance expert Vivi Friedgut.

The comments come as a report from insolvency trade body R3 found that five million British adults are considering taking out a payday loan in the next six months.

A separate study from consumer group Which? found that nearly half of the people who have taken out a payday loan have been unable to repay it. With Christmas approaching, Vivi is advising an open discussion in the home about issues relating to debt in order to avoid choosing spending and lending methods that could cause financial difficulties well into the New Year.

Vivi has just published a new book which is setting out to help families tackle money issues together for the first time. Money Smarter – A Family Guide is a down to earth, jargon free guide designed to help families become more confident with money.

Money Smarter, an engaging and informative book that comes with an accompanying CD, is the first book of its kind as it gives the tools to help families study personal finance issues together without bamboozling them with impracticalities.

It is created to be fun and includes activities, games and bite-sized sections that aid a healthy family discussion about being sensible with money without talking exclusively about penny pinching.

Private banker turned money management trainer Vivi tackles a single money-orientated theme each week, and promises that the book is both approachable and accessible.

Vivi said, “The start of 2013 many families should make a new years resolution to be more careful with money. Families need to become smarter about the way they spend and educate themselves about money management.

“At the heart of money management should be a plan and an understanding of financial products, how they can work for you and how to avoid common pitfalls. For instance, when many books simply say, ‘Debt is bad and will cause you problems later,’ Money Smarter says, ‘Debt can be good or bad, here’s some – now how do you handle it.’ It’s much more practical and exploratory in that respect.

“Money management should be taught from a very young age because it’s the only way to adequately prepare young people for a world where they are swamped with financial products and ways to spend their money. Personal finance should be taught in school as part of the syllabus and open, honest discussion surrounding cash should be encouraged at home. Money Smarter was created to stimulate and contribute to that discussion.”