Allowance, How Much? - Geneva,OH

Updated on August 21, 2012
M.G. asks from Geneva, OH
6 answers

So what is the going rate for allowance? Do you pay per age? Per chore? Difficulty of chore? How are your families handling this? My kids have just been given chore charts they are 12 and 9. By age I don't think together that their chores are worth $21 dollars a week. I was thinking half of that, which would go in a jar for money towards the chinchillas that they want. Thoughts?
Thank you!

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answers from Lafayette on

We follow Dave Ramsey's advice & pay our kids "commission" instead of "allowance". As adults, we get paid when we work -- this is the commission concept, so it sets them up to realize they must work to get paid as they get older. Some things they have to do because they are a part of our family & we all need to help out. Other things, we've assigned a commission amount to a chore, and they check it off as they complete it. We do vary the amount based on the difficulty and ability. We also have assigned a maximum amount that each child can earn each week (that way, we can budget & make sure we have enough money to pay them each week!). :) It's basically their age multiplied by 3. For example, my daughter just turned 9. So her maximum amount went from $2.40 (8x3) to $2.70 (9x3).

I'd suggest you figure out how much you guys are willing to pay each week. Then, make a list of chores they can earn commission for doing & assign dollar amounts for each. Make it clear that certain chores are just for being part of the family (clearing dishes after a meal, doing homework, picking out their clothes each day, etc.). Encourage them along the way! Even with the small amounts my kids get, they've saved up & been able to purchase a lot of things!

We always follow the give/save/spend method, where they "give" 10% first thing. For us, they give to something specific at our church. If you don't attend a church, you can give to a local food pantry, or the library, or something that is important to your family. Then they save 70% - 20% towards their long term goal (Nintendo 3ds for my kids) and 50% towards smaller goals (movies, toys, etc.). And the final 20% goes in their "spend" envelope. This can be a spur of the moment choice (a book, small toy, fingernail polish...something they aren't "saving" specifically for). It works really well & sets them up to handle finances as an adult.

Let me know if you have any specific questions. We enjoy this! =)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

We do: 1 Dollar per week per school year, this means the 7th grader gets $7.-/week etc.
Our kids have chores, their allowance is docked if they do not get them done by end of day Sunday. Chores include taking out the garbage, picking up dog poop in the back yard, etc.
We don't force them to save their allowance, but they understand that we usually only buy "big presents" for birthdays and Christmas, so if they want any new toys/electronics, they need to save for them.
They also understand that we will ask them to do things "for free", e.g. unloading the dishwasher - we don't want to have a family culture where kids ask to be paid for every move they make. On the other hand, we do occasionally offer them extra jobs if they are saving for a big ticket item, e.g. they can wash my car and I'll pay them the cost of the car wash or a bit less. We're trying to teach them 2 things: you are part of a family and need to contribute because you are a member of the family, but also, if you want money, you need to work for it. Seems to be working out OK so far (other than the usual discussions about "his chores are easier than mine" :-)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Missoula on

I pay an allowance based on age, in fact, my son recently negotiated a raise of fifty cents per week by explaining that when he was three he got three dollars, when he turned four he got four dollars, and now that he is four and a half, he should get $4.50. I gave him the raise :-)

Anyway, we give him allowance so he can start learning how money works, how to save for what he wants, how to share his money with those who need it, etc., but I don't pay him for doing his chores. He feeds the dogs, helps with dishes and laundry and helps with yardwork. He does that because we all contribute to the upkeep of the household. If he wants to earn extra money he can do extra chores for pay, but at our house everyone works and everyone gets a bit of spending money, its just part of being a family

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sacramento on

My kids are 7 and 8 1/2. A few months ago I gave them both a chore chart which had their daily responsibilities on it (like making their bed, putting dirty clothes in the hamper etc..) and chores that they could do for money. They never did any of them... and when they complained that they didn't have money to buy something I reminded them that they could be doing chores and earning money if it was really that important to them.

Now I have the idea that I will give them 4 set chores that they MUST do each week and I WILL give them a dollar on Sundays. If they want to do extra chores they can, for $ .25 each... so each week they have the potential to earn as much as they want... but I framed it as "if you do one chore every day you can earn almost $2.00!!" We haven't implemented this yet because school starts this week, but as soon as we're in a routine I'm putting this to action. I'm going this route because they really want their own money, they have little concept about how much things really cost so saving for something would be good for them, and they really need to be helping more around the house because their are both old enough to have chores that they are responsible for.

$21 dollars a week sounds like a lot to me! Maybe I'm cheap... but what I know if that kids' tastes/toys get more expensive as they get older so if you start out on the high side you're going to be paying through the nose as they get older and you want them to carry more responsibility.


answers from Seattle on

I have 2 boys that are doing chores and get an allowance.
My 7 year old (he'll be 7 in a month!) has to take out the trash and recycle whenever I ask him to. It's kind of a pain because we live at an apt complex and the ONE trash can they have is about a block away. He also has to clean both of the bathrooms on Saturday morning and his room needs to be cleaned and vacuumed.
My 10 year old (in 2 weeks!) has to clean the living room, dining room, and kitchen floor on Saturday mornings. That means he must put things in people's rooms (his brother and baby sister) and then he must vacuum, sweep and mop. He also needs to clean and vacuum his room. On top of that he has dinner dishes Mon/We/Fri.
They each get paid $5 a week. $2.50 MUST be put into the bank. We opened up a savings account for them a couple of weeks ago and I made it clear that that is the place for SAVING their money. They want something then they need to save their other $2.50 or save up in their savings account and ask us if they can use their money (if they want a DSi or something else expensive).
I want my kids to understand the value of a dollar. I want them to understand that if they work they get paid and if they complain I keep the money. I want them to understand that just because they get paid they don't get to immediately go out and spend it (like the want us to!). They need to understand how money works, they need to understand about savings.
So far, my 10 year old is doing great and my 7 year old thinks we are the worst parents ever. Oh well.



answers from Cleveland on

Don't get me wrong, I understand teaching children the value of working for what they want and saving and the value of them knowing what things cost ect. but i refuse to pay my kids to do their part in taking care of their home and their things.

I'm not paid to cook for them, take them to activities, help them with homework ect. I do these things because I love them and they are my kids and we are a family. I take care of my own things because I like having nice things, and I expect the same from them. (big kids are 13, 11 and 9).

Every morning we all do chores, then we all get to have fun. When it comes to money they get plenty for holiday's from family and I have taught them to save that and spend it wisely as they want things that I'm not willing to purchase. It's worked well, they normally have more money than I do in my wallet, and they check the price before even asking me for something.

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