I’ve read a lot of different views regarding giving children allowances. Should children be paid for doing daily chores? Don’t they need to understand that every member of the family contributes to the upkeep of the home? Should they get paid for that contribution?
I decided that while it’s important children learn to help out around the home, it’s also vital that they learn how to handle money, even at a young age. If I can achieve both goals at once, that’s even better.
We’re bringing back allowances for our children, but we’re going to do it on a commission basis. If they finish all of their work, they get paid; if they don’t finish, then they don’t earn any money. To help cut back on the complaining during our school hours, I’m including schoolwork along with those chores. If that isn’t completely finished as well, they don’t get paid for the day.
And a job can’t be half-way done — it has to be done well, no matter how long it takes. It used to bother me that my second child took so long to finish her chores, but then I realized that it’s her work and her time, and she can choose how to spend it. If she wants to move more slowly, that’s fine, as long as she finishes the work.
For our family, payday will come once a week (except for my five-year-old, who will be paid every day), and I’ll give each child what he or she has earned. Then the lesson continues with Dad, as he helps each one budget their money.
I heard once that if we view an allowance as a tool, we can use it to teach our children good money management habits. Not only will they be enforcing their math work as they decide how much to save, give, and spend, but they’ll be learning valuable life lessons as well.
Guest Blogger: Samantha Bell