Reviewed by Sarah Ell

It’s that other ‘big talk’ parents dread – some people would rather do almost anything other than talk to their kids about money. 

Attitudes to money and problems relating to it are being swept under the carpet. This wall of silence is causing more and more financial stress for Kiwis. And many young people are suffering ‘failure to launch’, even into their ’20s and ’30s – unable to become financially independent adults and live away from the family home and the Bank of Mum and Dad.

Hannah McQueen is a no-nonsense financial personal trainer. She says the number one barrier between many of her clients and financial freedom is their kids. And she’s got a plan to deal with it, starting young and increasing the amount of financial education and exposure kids receive, until they are able to control their own purse strings.

This readable guide covers all ages and stages: from five to nine, when the basics of how money works need to be laid down; the pre-teen and teen years, when money starts to have real-world applications; through to leaving school, going into higher education, getting a job, and starting to grow wealth.

In a world of easy credit, cashless spending, social media pressure, and global financial instability, it is harder than ever for today’s young people to succeed financially. It’s no longer enough, McQueen says, to tick all the ‘right’ boxes of education, working, saving, and paying off a mortgage to guarantee a comfortable retirement.

Pocket Money to Property is full of practical strategies and ideas for making money conversations easier, and instilling good habits. It covers the big topics such as debt, leverage and savings, career choices, and the special financial challenges facing girls and young women. 

McQueen’s advice, if you can’t face talking to your family about money, is to find someone who will – or you’ll leave home before your kids do.