Saw this in a press release this morning and almost spit out my coffee!
- Children average $30 a week in allowance
Daaaang!!! Inflation sure has gotten crazy over the years! That is exactly $29 more a week than I got as a kid, and $28 more/week than I got when I was a teen ;) Which wouldn’t have even covered a measly pack of baseball cards so I was forced to go out and work a job! (And looking back maybe that was my parents’ evil plan all along?! Haha…)
My kids don’t currently get anything a week except for love and encouragement and some good ol’ quality time with dad, but the topic of money has started creeping up more and more now so it’s only a matter of time until we have “the talk.”
And if I’m being completely honest, I’m not sure where I stand on it?
Do I just copy what my parents did and shell out $1.00/week per kid since it’s nice and easy and I came out relatively (?) okay in the end? Do I double or triple it and not put my kids through the agony of scouring $1.00 Target bins?! ;) Or do I do what I see other finance bloggers doing and just tell them “you contribute to this house because it’s the right thing to do whether you get paid for it or not!” Haha…
Open to any and all opinions if you’re willing to share – I know you have some! It’s just as juicy as politics and tipping and maybe even religion! Lol…
(And I have to point out – my meager allowance in youth *did* come with responsibilities that my siblings and I rotated doing every week, which I 100% plan on implementing with my kids too whether we compensate them or not. I want everyone learning they need to help out around the house!)
- Kids are averaging $6.11 an hour to do chores, up 38 percent from 2016 (crazy!!)
- Two-thirds of parents give their child an allowance
- Four out of the five parents who give allowance expect their children to earn it (I like this)
- 3 percent of parents say their kids primarily save their allowance
That last one there hit me even harder than the $30/avg stat (which, btw, *has* to be for older kids and not the younger ones I’m thinking, right?? And at what age do you start phasing this stuff out anyways??!).
If you swap that last bullet it means 97% of all these “kids” getting their freshly earned allowances are then turning around and blowing it!! Which is nothing out of the ordinary since again – they’re kids – but what a great time to instill some good ol’ fashion personal finance virtues in them while we’re at it! The benefits of saving, budgeting, spending wisely, giving, etc etc…
It seems like this was actually the MAIN point of that press release by the time I got to the end of it (well done, guys!! You hit us with the shock and then snuck in the moral!!), and reminded me of an excellent book I was once passed that I now read to my own kids today:
“Three Cups” by Tony Townsley and Mark St. Germain
(Only a couple bucks on Amazon* right now! Highly recommend! (*affiliate link))
Here’s the brief from their website – 3cupsbook.com:
“As new parents, my wife and I wanted to find a way to teach our children about money, so we agreed on using a weekly allowance to accomplish this. We thought it equally important to teach our children good values as related to money (saving, spending and charity) to help them develop positive habits early on that would last them the rest of their lives.
This was when we came up with the idea of using three cups. We’ve tried to teach our children that it is not how much money you have that is important, it’s how you use it. The three cups we have given them have led us on many wonderful adventures together and have brought our family a lot of joy. We hope you will experience the same joy, excitement and success using three cups with your children…”
“It is not how much money you have that is important, it’s how you use it.” <– That line there says it all! And it’s written in a way that’s super relatable – and doable! – for kids too. Every time we read it my boys want to go through the cupboards and start pulling out all our mugs ;)
I’ve never really harped on it and gotten them to actually *follow through*, but I’m thinking they’re finally at the age where it’s time to discuss this stuff more seriously, and perhaps this 3 Cups idea might just be a perfect starting point?
Imagine if you did this with your money your entire life???! And how much you’d have in saving right now AND impact in the world??
Not to mention how easily lifestyle inflation would have been kept away?!
In fact, you know someone else who does this that I just remembered?? Angelina Jolie!! She saves 1/3 of her money, spends 1/3 of it on living, and then gives away the last 1/3! Easier to do when you make “stupid money” as she puts it, haha, but still a damn worthy way to spread it around…
At any rate, food for thought today, and would love to hear how you feel about the whole “allowance” thing… Do you give any of your kids money every week? And if so, do they have to earn it? What did your parents do growing up?
I’ll report back on my own experiments as they go, but you can bet your sweet patookus I won’t be shelling out $30/week to any of my kids, I’ll tell you that much, haha… Ain’t nothing you need that badly that we don’t already provide! Plus – there’s something called “yard sales!”
See ya down in the comments…
On another inflation-related note, did you know the Tooth Fairy now pays out $3.70 on average per tooth?? It’s a wild time we’re living in, friends!!