what do you think about this idea??? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 07-01-2003, 04:39 PM - Thread Starter
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I cant remember where i found this but i have been really thinking about it and wondering if its a good idea or not... First of all i dont expect her to do good with it for the first few months....shes pretty irresponsible BUT maybe it will start working after awhile. She is starting high school this year and i plan to take her out and buy her all new clothes and supplies and then she is on her own. Should i do this or not?
Heres the idea:

My daughter had a friend who's mom did this. I decided to try it and I just can't tell you how well it's worked so far!!!!

I give my daughter a $200/month allowance (just listen before you say whoah!!)
She gets paid $100 on the 1st and 15th.
She has to purchase her own clothes, toiletries (shampoo, deod., makeup, etc). The only thing I purchase for her is food. She eats her school lunches out of that money. When she rents a video, she pays. She just got her first cell phone - she pd for it and she will pay the monthly bill.
She has 4 chores to be done in the house each and every day. If a chore does not get done - she pays me $5.00 for each chore not done. If she fails to do all her chores she owes me $20 that night.
For her report cards she is rewarded extra money for A's & B's and has to pay me for C's and lower ($10 for each c, $20 for D's and $40 for F's. I give her $30 for A's and $20 for B's)
She must keep a checkbook register accurately. She has to keep track of all her spending down to the penny. On payday, I check her register and if she is off over $5 - I dock $10 off her pay for each $5 she is off.

When we go to the movies - she pays her own way. I do pay for her food when we go out to eat together. She pays for any school fees and etc. She had to pay for her own yearbook.

The major benefits: She is learning how to manage her money wisely. At first she thought she was rich! She and her friend went to the mall and got clothes. She said she did good cause she'd saved herself $40 for school lunches and stuff. I kindof laughed and reminded her of our agreement that under NO circumstances would I bail her out. If she had no lunch money then she could go hungry. 2 weeks later she was without lunch at school!! She never did that again!

She has learned how to balance a checkbood register. What is really nice is to see how picky she is now about "bargin hunting" She now looks at prices before she grabs something off the shelf. She now realizes how those little things all add up.

I really REALLY love how this has worked out. However, I told myself and her from the beginning that I would NEVER bail her out! Nor would I ever loan or advance her any money and I haven't. She's asked but I just reply - sorry, you know the rules!

I highly reccommend this to anyone with a teenager who thinks the more money a shirt cost the better. For a teenager who wouldn't be "caught dead" shopping at Wal-mart. For a teenager who needs to learn to budget and manage money. And for any parent who is tired of dumping hundreds each month so your kid can look cool.

here's a funny: She use to just INSIST that she hated shaving with soap and just HAD to have womens shaving cream. She said the soap irritated her skin. And it's really amazing at how now, that soap works just fine! When she buys her make - up she's no longer buying $30 foundation and $10 lipstick or gloss. She usually looks in the "Wet-n-Wild" section of the cosmetics!!! I just love it!!!
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#2 of 15 Old 07-04-2003, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Anybody??? Bad or good...i just need some input, pretty please
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#3 of 15 Old 07-04-2003, 09:48 PM
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I'm not sure about paying for grades, but the rest I like. My eldest is only 8, so I'm a while off that yet.
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#4 of 15 Old 07-05-2003, 12:02 AM
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We did something similar to that, although not quite as extreme, when I was growing up. I got $100/month and had to buy all of my own clothes, gas, makeup, and other personal items. My parents did pay for school-related expenses, food when I was out with them, and that type of thing. I think it's a wonderful idea. In fact, I think that giving kids small allowances and then paying for just about everything is a poor decision. They learn how to budget their "fun" money, but they don't really learn the value of a more all-encompassing budget.

I also think it's a good idea to give the money less often than once a week, like most allowances are typically handed out. Most people who have blue collar jobs get paid somewhere between once every 2 weeks and once a month. I used to work at a company that paid once a month, and many of the employees were just out of college. I can't tell you how many people had to bring sack lunches the last week of the month because they were always running out of money. It's good to get used to being paid less often while you're young, when not being able to meet your expenses doesn't mean you'll be late with a car payment.
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#5 of 15 Old 07-05-2003, 12:46 AM
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I think it's great you are teaching her how to budget. I probably would change amounts or things the child is responsible for and not pay for grades, but I think the idea is good and you are doing your teen a great service. I am terrible about budgeting and I could've used this as a teen.
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#6 of 15 Old 07-05-2003, 05:41 AM
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I think its a really good idea. My brother does this for his daughter (she's 16 or so) except he includes that she has to buy her own food, down to the details of not even sharing salt or pepper! I think that might a bit much, but it works out really well for them too.

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#7 of 15 Old 07-05-2003, 01:42 PM
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I learned yeas ago that things that work for us may possibley not work for other families and wha works for other families may not work for us.
Cherrypie, if this works of your family than that's wonderful. We have never given what I would call an allowance. We have four kids, 3 are teens, if we gave each $200 a month we would be broke!!!!

I am so glad you found something that worked .................

I understand how kids see a big difference in the value of something when they are spending there own money.

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#8 of 15 Old 07-05-2003, 02:19 PM
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I agree that it's great if it works for you. We won't be doing it. Honestly I don't think 200 a month is enough to buy clothes and pay for lunches at school (although we HS so just a guess) and entertainment for a teen. I also think that the plan as it's layed out requires too much parental supervision and too many lists of things to be docked for and payed for per month. I would never pay for grades (see the book Punished by Rewards). I also would never let my kid go hungry at school.
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#9 of 15 Old 07-06-2003, 09:57 PM
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i agree with arduinna. i don't pay for grades. but i'm glad it works for you...
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#10 of 15 Old 07-07-2003, 03:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for all the advice....i think we are going to do it but i will be changing the amount. She is only 13 and i think thats alot of money for her. She gets free lunch at school so she doesnt HAVE to buy lunch and i will always pay for her when we go out to eat. I wont be paying for grades. And i am not sure about the whole chore thing.....we have major issues when it comes to chores lol. I plan to take her clothes shopping before she starts HS and getting her started on clothes and then the rest will be up to her. So maybe i will start out with 100 dollars a month...see how she does and maybe next year raise it up some....anyways, thanks so much for all the advice!!!!
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#11 of 15 Old 07-10-2003, 04:50 AM
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I wouldn't pay for grades - but you could try the rest and see how it goes.
We give our dd1 an allowance weekly (she is young yet) and it sure does teach them about money! AMAZING how stuff she just HAS to have is not so necessary when it would be HER money paying for it....
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#12 of 15 Old 07-10-2003, 06:41 PM
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I like the basic idea, but I would modify some of the particulars, and I would DO IT GRADUALLY because I think that's less apt to result in really horrible mistakes (the tone of the OP bothers me; sounds like she enjoyed seeing her daughter suffer) while still teaching financial responsibility. For example: This year, she pays for all her entertainment and non-essentials such as make-up. Next year, she pays for all her clothes. The year after that, she pays for all food eaten outside the home. Senior year, she pays for everything not shared by the family.

I would not charge her for chores neglected, for 3 reasons: She might decide not to do them because "I don't need the money right now," it encourages her to think of family life as nothing but a set of economic transactions, and she might start charging ME when I go to bed exhausted with dishes left unwashed! Instead, I would continue to expect her to do certain chores because she is a member of the household (of course, she would've been doing some chores since age 4 or so) and offer money for occasional really major tasks.

I would never implement such a system without sitting down w/her and discussing the agreement. "You're going to take more responsibility for finances" would be non-negotiable, but which things she'd be responsible for and how much money I'd give her would be mutually agreed. She's unlikely to cooperate otherwise.

Another good idea is to have her keep a list of what she buys and for how much. Not only does this enable her to see where her money is going, but if she feels the budget is too small it gives her genuine evidence to negotiate with!

Irishmommy, your eldest is too young for this idea in full, but she's not too young to have a bank account and be responsible for a small portion of her budget. One of my friends had a checking account at 7 and was responsible for writing the checks for her ballet lessons and school lunch, for instance.

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#13 of 15 Old 07-10-2003, 09:50 PM
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I think she needs to do something before she gets the $.

No one IRL will hand her $100 for nothing.

Money, income, wages, needs to be earned.

There is already too much of a sense of entitlement in the world today.
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#14 of 15 Old 07-13-2003, 11:38 AM
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We do something similar but not so complete.
Dd has been showing rabbits for 4 years. We got her started but when she decided to go into breeding we did this:
She pays 1/2 the feed and supply bills. If she buys a rabbit she pays 100%. She also pays 1/2 her entry fees.

She buys her own CDs, movie rentals, and extras, makeup perfume etc.

I buy her clothes, hygiene products, medicines, etc.

I must also comment that she receives Social Security from her deceased Father. So her allowance comes from that and the sale of any rabbits, or any money she wins. She has a bank account that all her money goes through and a record book from 4-H that she can keep track of everything in.

I must say I think it is wise to give our girls some fiscal responsibility. My parents always managed my money. Then when I got married my late husband did it (and poorly I might add) so that when he died I was completely lost. I had no idea what we had or didn't or how to manage it. I was very lucky and had a good friend that sat down and helped me sort everything out and helped me to set up a budget but it was pretty embarrassing to have to do it at 32.
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#15 of 15 Old 07-31-2003, 01:06 PM
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I like the concept of giving her money and letting her budget how she spends it, for all the reason people have described above.

However, if I were your daughter, the detailed list of rules would drive me crazy. I would feel that if you were delegating this much financial responsibility to me, then I should be able to determine the details of how I would manage my money without being micromanaged. For example, I would feel like it was just my business how I kept track of my finances, by balancing a checkbook or whatever, and that it wasn't anybody else's concern.

I also don't like the paying for grades thing.
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