One of the things I wish I had learned as a child, or even a high schooler, was basic money management. I’m doing great now, but when I turned 18 and was finally old enough to apply for credit cards I set myself up for years of failure because I simply didn’t fully understand how they, or things like an actual budget, really worked. Yes, the theory was there, but I had no real-world experience.
Mellow is an app designed to help you teach kids 6-18 that stuff so when they do head out into the real world they have a better feel for how to be financially stable in it.
With the app, parents can digitally pay kids an allowance, and then track how the child spends that allowance. The magic happens thanks to a connected Mastercard debit card which is where the funds go. Yes, your 6-year-old could potentially have a debit card.
Within the app, your child can see how much more he or she has saved, and how long they have to wait before they’ll get more money deposited into their account (presuming you’re working with a regular allowance).
They can set savings goals to buy specific things like a video game or car, and track that spending each week. If they input a specific purchase goal, for instance, an $80 video game a month from now, then the app can tell them they need to save $20/week to make that happen.
Parents can also add tasks like chores into the app where kids can see things they can do to earn additional spending money or other things, like screen time.
Both parents and the child can see how their cash is being spent within the app, broken into categories. For instance, a child might see they spend the majority of their money on food and drink. If they’re trying to get that game, then they might consider cutting back on trips to Starbucks or the local ice cream shop.
For adults that already know all this stuff it’s pretty basic; however, for kids who might not traditionally have access to things like credit cards and banking apps it can be a great way to lay some groundwork now so they’re successful when they’re trying to manage their money in the future.