How can we ensure our children are money savvy? Should allowance should be tied to chores?
As of January 2014, the average credit card debt of an American household is $15,270 [source]. Ouch.
Over the last four years my family made drastic changes in our lifestyle. We are finally out of credit card debt. Instead of looking back at our struggles, I want to look forward to our children's future.
How can we as parents come together to ensure our children are money savvy? We've been chatting over on Facebook about allowances and chores. I have two primary influences when it comes to money and parenting: Dave Ramsey and Love & Logic. Yet, the two disagree on this important question:
Read their opposing viewpoints here:
WHAT REAL PARENTS ARE SAYING
This is what you've been saying...
Chores are chores! If you get paid for them they become a job. It is important to learn life lessons. You don't need to be paid to do your share. Mom doesn't get paid for doing laundry or dad for mowing the lawn. So my opinion is they should be separated 100%! Sam Mandefro
I have read time and again that allowance should be kept separate from chores to foster a sense of helping around the house because it is the right thing to do, not because it is attached to a reward. We tried this for a while but there was no value placed on the allowance and we decided that teaching our son that the financial reward comes from applying himself to his chores is an important life lesson. Ness Hoffmann | One Perfect Day
Yes and no....Always depends on age; but there are chores and then there are things that they should be expected to do without payment or reward simply because they are a responsible member of the family. Jennifer Bokmeyer
We believe that chores are just a part of being a member of our family. It's one way we help each other out and it gives our kids a sense of responsibility for themselves....especially when they aren't the only ones making a mess! So we don't attach an allowance to them. I'm reading a great book on motivation right now called "Drive," that explains why situations like allowance attached to chores may look like it works at first, but is only a honeymoon period and won't last. Heather Ruppel | Little Moments
^^ what Heather said. We do give allowances on the first of the month, just like I get an amount of money to budget and so does Daddy, but none of that is tied to chores. Everyone in the family pitches in. Our girls budget their own monthly allowance (50% spend, 40% save, 10% tithe) and they also get raises when Daddy and Mama get raises. Heidi Arkebauer Peters
Our chore chart and allowance chart are in the same sheet. The chores are age appropriate and daily, while the allowance chores are once in a while to help maintain the home chores. If they don't do any chores, they don't get allowance (just cleaning up an area but not setting the table or feeding the dog, for example). It's more tangible now for them, but we'll shift as needed as they grow (8&6 yo). Dona Bailey Nishi
Yes! I think that in the long run it teaches kids how things work in the workforce when they're older... Too many of the younger generation in the workforce these days don't have good work ethics and don't understand that you actually have to work to get paid! Kelly Elnick Slamka
We have two separate systems...one is the chores which are not tied to cash payouts. I go with the "Mommy doesn't get paid to do these things, and neither will you" approach to household things. We all pitch in because we are members of the family. I am hoping to at least teach them enough cleaning/picking up values that they are good roommates/spouses in the future. For allowances, they get a set amount and we are working on "money management" such as saving some/spending some now and donating to charity. I really liked Dave Ramsey's series for younger kids on helping us teach "the value of a dollar". Dana Ellen Dolvig
We have chores that are expected, and not tied to an allowance. However, my husband and I encourage our kids to go around the house with a clipboard and make up lists of what they think needs to be done. Then they are encouraged to negotiate a "rate" with us. Fosters entrepreneurial thinking and negotiating skills -- plus, the house gets tidied up too! Valerie Deneen | Inner Child Fun
There is such a negative connotation with the word "chore." It sounds almost painful! Housekeeping and being responsible for ones personal belongings is each family members job as a member of the family with no money being exchanged. Going above and beyond that an allowance system could be offered. For example: Clean the bathroom sink = $2, Vacuum the living/dining room = $3. Laura Roach Hayden
My kids don't have an allowance at the moment as at 5 and 7 we don't feel they need one. They don't tend to spend anyway and still have birthday money from last June and August! They do however have chores to do as doing chores is part of being a family. As they get older we are thinking of having additional chores that are optional to earn a bit of money. Natasha Coster
What do YOU think?
I am still up in the air on this decision and I'd love your feedback.
P.S. Be sure to pop on over and read about the following allowance tips: Money Mondays and the 3-Way Split.
Last of all, I'll be checking out this new book when it is released: Smart Money Smart Kids: Raising the Next Generation to Win with Money. I can't wait to check it out!
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