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Managing Your Money


Can you distinguish between needs and wants?

Teens should understand the difference between the two because it really involve and influence their money management. The table below gives some examples between needs and wants:



A  home or shelter

Cell  phone

Balanced diet/food

Fast food

Transportation to school/work

Video games

Clothing to wear

Designer clothing

Every teenagers need to develop skill in money management because soon they will be leaving home and have to manage their own money. Teens should know where their money is going now and plan for future spending.

There is nothing wrong with having a few wants but, as teenagers you have to set your own budget to plan to get them. Start practicing good personal money management habits now.

Steps in managing your money:

Step 1: Goal setting

You have to work out what you really want to do with your money. Determine how much your goals will cost you and the dates you want to get them. You can download Financial Goals Chart to list your goals using this link http://www.balancetrack.org/home/teensandmoney/pdf/financialgoals.pdf

You can calculate how much you should save each month by calculating:

The price of an item divided by the months you target to get the item.

Step 2: Save as much as possible.

No one ever regrets having saved money. Cut down on unnecessary spending so that you will have more money. Start with saving half of what you get eg. if your parents give you RM100, put RM50 of it in your savings and the other RM50 for you to spend for the month.

Step 3: Plan your budget

Create your own budget planning, hold on to it and spend it only on your plans or goals as in step 1. By doing this it will help you save for those wanted items and keep your spending under control.
You can download budget worksheet at the following link:


There is one basic rule to follow: if your expenses is more than your income, you have to make changes either by increasing your income, decreasing your expenses or do both.

Step 4: Set up a saving account.

Using a savings account you can keep your money in and forget about it until you really need it. Look for a nice savings account, you may need your parents assistance to apply if your are under age.
Lastly, remember “A penny saved is a penny earned”. Happy saving!




Last Reviewed : 3 June 2015
Writer : Dr. Norizzati Bukhary bte. Ismail Bukhary
Accreditor : Dr. Thiyagar Nadarajaw