I live in Los Angeles, and my daughter makes $3,000 to $5,000 a month modeling. I don’t want her to become spoiled by this job and the income, and I need advice on what to do with the money. Should it be put aside for a car, and do you think she should have to pay for something like that herself?
So how do we keep a high-income, high-profile job from ruining this little girl? I think a lot of it has to do with her interaction with you, and how you gently mold her work ethic and attitude. Don’t let her become a diva. She’s not there to be fawned over or placed on a pedestal. She’s there to serve. That means working hard and doing the best she can. That’s her job whether she’s flipping burgers or making $5,000 a month modeling. The money’s nice, but what we’re really doing is making sure she learns some important life lessons. And you’re still being a parent, not a friend or peer, through every moment.
When it comes to the money, you guys should sit down and discuss some goals for the future. I think it’s important that any car purchase be reasonable, because the best thing a kid this age could do with that kind of money is save up for college. Even if she goes to school on a full scholarship, she should be driving something low-key. Just because she gets a free ride in college doesn’t mean she gets to cruise the streets in a Lamborghini. Set the rest of it aside for when life really begins— after college.
As her mom, it’s very important that you teach her these lessons now. It’s essential, too, that you don’t surrender the position of parent, teacher and leader. Chances are when this young lady is 34, no one will give a flip that she modeled for a while as a teenager. The most important things here are the lessons taught and learned, not the money.
Savings and security
My wife and I make about $100,000 a year. We have $63,000 in the bank, and we owe $47,000 on our home. The house is worth about $250,000, and it’s our only debt. We’d like to go ahead and pay off the house, but we’re worried about depleting our savings to that extent. What would you do ?
I’d cut a check and pay off the house. Keep in mind that by doing this we’re not saying you’ll keep your savings at that lower point. Once that mortgage payment is off your backs, you’ll be able to save more and save faster than ever!
Pay off the house and become completely debt- free today. You’ll still have $16,000 dollars in the bank and a six-figure income. It won’t take you long to rebuild your savings all the way back to what you had before, if that’s what you both want.
You could do it in just a few months. Go for it, Matt!