Working Mom Life Tips #5: Should They Get Allowances?
Working Mom Life Tips
Should your cherubs get an allowance? If so, what age should they start? There are about 70% of parents that give their cherubs allowances and the rational is varied. I remember getting an allowance as a child. I don’t remember it being tied to chores or life skills but I do remember learning how to budget and to save for things I wanted to purchase.
Advantages of Allowances
- Familiarity with Money. I was taken aback when my youngest cherub asked me one day what was that paper I holding (a $5 bill). On another occasion my son said that if I need to buy something, why don’t I just use my card. The reason why they was not familiar with paper money was because I seldom carry cash and use my debit card to pay for everything. It is important for cherubs to be familiar with money and see that it is a real thing. I can see why they would think that it is an endless streamed resource directly from the debit/credit card. If they never touch money and appreciate its reality then it is difficult for them to conceptualize its manipulation in the form of earning, saving, investing and spending.
- Learn to be Industrious. Many approach the allowance situation as a reward for going above and beyond the expected chores in the home. A Savvy cherub will learn to come up with ingenious ways to earn money will learn some entrepreneurial skills along the way. You never know, they may have the building blocks for their business ventures that start at home trying to come up with creative ways to earn it.
- Learn to Save. My mom gives our cherubs each a roll of quarters or which they save $9 in their piggy banks. They are learning the importance of saving and hopefully this will habit will stay with throughout. They have filled their jars once so far and were able to deposit over $200 in each of their bank accounts. We live in a country that is not very big on saving and instead debt and spending is the norm. By saving, they also learn about delayed gratification which is such a valuable asset.
- Learn to Give. So the $1 that is not saved is given as offering at church. This teaches our cherubs that they should give 10% of their income to God. If you are not involved in a church, mosque or synagogue then putting aside 10% to given to a charity or charities of choice accomplishes the same thing. Paying it forward by giving of time and or money makes our communities and neighborhoods thrive. Altruism is not dead and falls unto grateful shoulders when done with a happy heart.
- Budgeting. Our cherubs are still young for this but I anticipate that when they are teens they will likely want to spend some of their allowance or money earned from being industrious. This is the opportune time to introduce budgeting, long range saving plans for the purchase of a favored item, and other skills like writing a check, depositing funds into a back account and using a debit card. I a not sure at what age I plan to have them be involved in the budget planning and monthly bill paying meeting at our house.
However you decide to implement the introduction and manipulation of money, an allowance can be a great tool for this education. Handling money responsibly is a skill that will be used for a lifetime. There are some really neat tools to help with this like the Smart Piggy Trio Bank and MoonJar Moneybox. Ron Leiber’s The Opposite of Spoiled: Raising Kids Who Are Grounded, Generous And Smart About Money is a great resource for teaching cherubs about money. Games are another way to make lessons about money fun. Our cherubs love to play Moneywise Kids which shows them how to pay bills and to save with the winner being able to manage their money the best.
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post. I appreciate you. If you found it helpful, comment below and share it.
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