On the Fly Financial Dashboard for Families
Canadians are less financially literate today than ever before. In 2019, only 24% of millennials showed basic financial literacy skills. With unlimited resources at our fingertips, why are the numbers so low? And worse: why are they declining? Finances aren’t often discussed within families. Most kids hear the sex talk before they receive the money talk. Some parents aren’t sure how to approach the topic, others view money as a private subject, and some believe understanding personal finance isn’t important until later in life. Moreover, most parents assume that financial literacy is covered in school. Unfortunately, too many kids are learning about the consequences of poor money management the hard way.
The solution? On the Fly: a Financial Dashboard for Families. FrogskinU’s years of on-the-ground research and testing will deliver an online tool where families input their personalized savings, goals, financial profiles for each family member into a secure system that visualizes their accounts in relation to geographic averages (see attached images). For example, a teenager can use the Dashboard to compare their own spending on video games to other kids in their area, along with their siblings.
The Financial Dashboard is an essential tool for parents to help kids see the finite nature of their family finances. They will see the progress of their individual goals, but also family goals—such as vacations or saving up for a pet. Kids can then better understand the direct consequences of wants vs needs. The Dashboard will empower kids by highlighting investing. For instance, imagine kids seeing and participating in the growth of their RESP by contributing birthday money or 20% of their summer job income.
The Dashboard will help protect the family money tree by tracking spending blindspots including IOUs and debt. The Dashboard will support accountability by highlighting the true costs of spending choices.
Lastly, the Dashboard will incorporate links to financial resources, based on life stages. For example, a mixed family will need different resources than a newly combined couple.
The Dashboard, as a whole, is designed to help families visualize their money patterns, build good habits, but most importantly, open up the conversation about finances and reduce the discomfort and stigma around talking about all things money.
Who Will it Benefit?
Our passion lies in supporting families, today’s youth and future generations to become capable confident money managers. Rather than further delay or defer the money talk, the Financial Dashboard @ Home will directly benefit youth by bringing a necessary tool into their homes. By providing the template and mechanism, youth will learn first hand that their financial success is a result of their own good choices—even among high income families where research shows that kids mistakenly believe their financial success is guaranteed.
The metrics and graphs provided on the Dashboard will show youth in a comprehensive way how their money choices impact long and short term goals as well as future and potential savings. They will understand the realities of opportunity cost by seeing what a slurpee-a-day habit really costs. The Dashboard will visualize, at-a-glance, how their money could have multiplied if saved or invested. The Dashboard will be a visual recording support for families families, underscoring experiential learning and sparking the money talk while breaking down money myths and stigma.
Comparisons to geographic averages will create friendly competition among peers, siblings and even parents by providing a comparative benchmark. It will also help users set realistic goals based on regional cost-of-living metrics. FrogskinU has researched how to utilize peer-based learning for social good for more than a decade.
For parents, the Dashboard represents a great template to teach financial principles and capabilities. Bringing the money conversation into the home will give parents peace-of-mind knowing what and how their kids learning about money. They can rest easy knowing their children are retaining lasting information and skills that will set the stage for good money habits and a solid financial foundation.