How much allowance do you give? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 07-19-2013, 06:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Allowance is a thing we have struggled with. We gave it, but then she and we both forgot about it as we seem to just buy her stuff when she wants it. But she's 11 and it seems like she should have an allowance.

I was going to put this in the pre-teen/teen forum, but then my second question was what age kids should start getting an allowance.

So I guess I have two questions - how much, and at what age do you start? Also, I guess maybe whether there's anything required to get the allowance or whether they just get it as spending money no matter what.
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#2 of 6 Old 07-19-2013, 07:31 AM
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My girls are 6 and 8.  From the time dd1 was 5yo (and dd2 3yo because she wanted what dd1 had) I've given one quarter per year per week.  I started then because dd1 was asking for lots of little things and I though, why not?  She definitely had some struggles with it, but for the most part she handles her money quite well now she is 8yo.  3yo was much too young to start, but we did so she could get an allowance like her sister.  She mainly liked "having" the money, and when she did spend it, she cried because her quarters were gone.  Ah, well.


As they've gotten older (now earning 2.00 and 1.50) I've wondered whether I would give them more at some point, like starting around 10.  But I've decided for our particular situation there is no need.  First, the small allowance allowed them to make mistakes without me stressing how they were using their money.  But also, since dh and I are both self-employed the girls already have chances to earn some decent cash.  I pay them $6 per hour for real work at certain client's houses, and dh has paid them to clean up after him at his work (he's a gardener).  The opportunities for them to work are going to rise exponentially in the next few years.  It might even replace allowance, but I can still give it if they want.  It's a fun birthday present to get your "extra allowance" with a .25 raise.


If I didn't have the employment to give them, I think I would still be considering a bigger raise at 10yo, but I still think I'd keep it small.  The advice I loved best was that if you get upset when they squander their money, they are getting too much.


ETA: I am very diligent about giving them their allowance.  It allows them to plan and save and, yes, they are actually starting to do that now.  Right now they are saving for their pony rides at the fair (or an elephant ride--I said I'd spot them half) because they already get riding lessons-- not paying for pony rides, thank you.

"She is a mermaid, but approach her with caution. Her mind swims at a depth most would drown in."
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#3 of 6 Old 07-19-2013, 08:11 AM
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I started DD out at a dollar a week then raised it to two when she was saving for an American Girl doll. I am considering raising it to three now because she has become very into magazines and I want to support that while still making her have ownership. Allowance isn't tied to anything in our house. Chores are done because they need to be not because I pay for them to be.
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#4 of 6 Old 07-19-2013, 12:34 PM
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We started when our son was 10.  The main reason why we started giving him an allowance was so he could pay for things that he broke with his own money.  I did some general googling of allowances and read an article about the allowance being 1/2 the age of the child.  That sounded good to me so he got $5 a week, paid every two weeks when I got paid.  Now that he is 15, it's $15 every two weeks.  He gets $10 in cash and I put the other $5 in his saving account and I match his deposit.  The idea of saving some of it came from him.  I think that he's only had to pay for one thing that he broke (his niece's playhouse; he broke a couple of boards in the back wall.  Paid the replacement wood slats and repaired the playhouse) since getting an allowance.  It's served it's main purpose of getting him to thing about consequences before acting.  Now it's serving the purpose of learning how to handle money, save, and budget for big ticket items.  We don't pay for chores or for helping out other family members.  That's just part of being a member of the family.

Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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#5 of 6 Old 07-20-2013, 10:39 AM
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My kids (11 and 16) get a basic allowance of $20 per month.  They can also do additional chores to earn more money.  

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#6 of 6 Old 07-20-2013, 11:06 AM
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Ds is 8 and gets $3 a week. He buys his own toys, we only buy gifts for Christmas and his birthday, other than that, any toy he wants, he buys it out of his own money.
I don't link money to chores, I just give an allowance because I want him to learn money management. He's pretty good now at knowning money, counting it, learned about tax, knows how to pay for something, read a receipt, watch for sales. He also keeps a ledger for his own "income" and expenses.
When he turns 9 I plan to increase his allowance and give him the responsibility to budget for and buy his own clothes. I think it will help him prepare for the teenage years.
Dd doesn't care about money yet. I'll probably start giving her an allowance next year.

Ds 9
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