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Interview with Louis Barajas, Author

Q. Please tell us a little about your background?
A. I was born in Boyle Heights, CA. My parents are immigrants from Mexico.

Q. What drew you to writing about kids and money and/or money?
A. What drew me to writing books about money and developing an abundant mind-set was seeing people unnecessarily suffering over the lack of money. What also drew me was seeing how the lack of money brought out the worst in people.

Q. Who introduced you to saving and/or money and at what age?
A. I read The Richest Man in Babylon in college and this book talked about saving 10% of what you earn to achieve financial success.

Q. Do you have a favorite place or container where you save change? If so, would you tell us a little about it?
A. Yes, I have a special dish next to my bed where I place my change every night when I get home. When the dish gets full, I transfer my change to a large Ziploc bag that I use to take to the bank. 

Q. What do you think the biggest challenge parents face when it comes to teaching children about money?
A. The biggest challenge parent’s face is that we live in a world of instant gratification. Kids and adults want everything now.

Q. What's your best tip for parents on teaching children about money?
A. My best tip is to teach them the Theory of Compounding in a way a kid can understand. Compounding is the eighth wonder of the world. I like to show kids how a little bit of money invested over a long time can be worth a lot.

Q. What's the biggest mistake you think parents make when it comes to teaching children about money?
A. The biggest mistake parents do to teach their kids about money is not being a role model to their kids. They need to follow their own advice and teach their kids by example.

Q. Are you pro allowance? Briefly, why or why not?
A. I am pro allowance when a child is taught how to properly save, contribute, and spend their money.
Q. At what age do you think credit card education should begin?
A. Credit card education should be taught in High School as soon as kids are allowed to start working.

Q. At what age do you think parents should allow children to have a credit card?
A. I think that credit cards are only appropriate for kids entering college. To purchase items as books and necessities (not wants)

Q. If you could only give a child one piece of advice on money, what would it be?
A. Money is to be used to help you express your full potential. Money is to be used to live a more comfortable life. The pure focus on making money does not make a person happier.

Q. What's your favorite family activity?
A. My favorite family activity is having our Sunday family dinner where our kids can invite their friends over.

Q. What's your favorite money quote or saying?
A. I have never seen a u-haul behind a hearse (also said as: you can’t take it with you)

Q. Do you have any final thoughts that you'd like to share with parents and trainers on kids and money?
A. Make teaching your children about money fun.

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