Any Clever Ways to Get Your Children to save Their Allowance?

Updated on April 18, 2012
C.K. asks from Palo Alto, CA
10 answers

Next Tuesday, April 22nd, Is National Teach Your Child to Save Day. In honor of this day, does anyone have a clever way they are teaching their children to save?

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answers from Dallas on

We kept a log. 30% to savings account, 30% to spend as you like, 30% Save for something special/gifts, 10% to charity.

They could have the spend as you like money immediately if they chose. The rest were saved for when appropriately needed.

You can use jars for younger kids so that they can actually see it if you like.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Houston on

My son has 3 jars (cuz I'm too cheap to buy piggy banks lol). He gets an allowance after doing chores each week. Half the money goes into the "savings" jar, the other half is split between a "goal" jar and the other goes into the "spending" jar. Savings is just that - for emergencies or important things and he basically doesn't get to spend it until he is out of the house. The goal jar is saving for something he specifically wants. Right now he wants a new basketball net - $99. We told him we'd pay for half if he saves up the other half. The spending jar is just that -its what he keeps in his wallet (in my purse) and he can spend it on anything he wants - baseball cards, a horn for his bike, a new eraser, popsicles - whatever he wants.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

We do the save/spend/give 3-way split with money in our house.

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answers from San Francisco on

My kids buy their own toys. Yes, really. They see something they want, then have to earn the money and save enough to buy it. My 6 year old almost has enough to buy the American Girl doll she wants. Personally I think it's insane to spend that kind of money on a doll, but that is what she wants, and has worked her little butt off to get it! My kids can work "overtime" - that is, do extra chores - for $5/hr. They also look forward to losing teeth, because the tooth fairy brings them a $1 coin for each tooth.

The funny thing is, my kids have really gained clarity on the value of money now that they earn it themselves and have to save up for things they want. When they've had to work to save up to buy something expensive, they all of a sudden start to re-think whether or not they really want/need the item. My older daughter (9 years old) has quite the savings account now, simply because she has become something of a minimalist in terms of what she feels she really "needs."



answers from Chicago on

Give them a goal. My kids have things they want and save up for it. They complain they want to see a movie but don;t have the money. I tell them they need to save for it. They do spend some of their money but not all. My girls had to pay for half of a camping trip they are going on plus they have to buy their supplies themselves. My daughter saved up her own money to buy her own IPod because I was not paying for it. Now she saves her money to buy Itunes cards so she can buy songs and stuff,



answers from Allentown on

My kids get money for chores they do around the house. They are 4 and 6. I think it has a lot to do with personality. No one ever taught me or my brother how to save, but I saved all my money, buying my Mom a bike for her birthday one year with the money I had saved over a number of years from chores, holidays and babysitting. My brother could not save money to save his life. Luckily his wife manages their money(LOL). Actually I think he learned the hard way by getting into debt. But I was a saver, and he was not. I see a huge difference in my kids too. My daughter saves her money and only uses it for things she really wants. My son is quick to buy things and uses his money fast. Now they don't get tons of money, being a single Mom I am limited and they get a nickel for each chore. At the end of the week we add it all up and some weeks they get 20 cents other weeks 2 dollars depending how much they did. Some weeks they have only received a nickel. We were at the dollar store yesterday and they both opted to buy two things and spend two dollars of their own money. They are learning about money at this point and I think learning about saving will come later. If you have older kids, you could open a savings account for them. They have accounts that teach kids about saving and using money. That might help. The kids can actually go online and see their money and there tools to show them about saving, etc. We have an account like that at PNC. I think experience is probably the best way to learn. Good luck!!!



answers from Honolulu on

How old is your child?
The age of the child matters. Per if they understand or not.

My kids have banks at home. They put their money in it. They decide if they want to spend it or save some for later.
They also have savings accounts.

We simply tell our kids, that if they spend all their money, they will have nothing left. So by trial and error, they have experienced this. First hand. If they want to buy something, we "help" them decide.... saying things like "is it worth it?", do you really need it or want it?, If you use your money now then how much will you have left? etc.
So then, it teaches them the PROCESS of the decision making.
Learning the PROCESS of how to use their money or not.
That is the key thing, that they learn.

My son is only 5 and he knows how to save his money or spend it.
My daughter is 9, and she knows how as well.
And they both understand the "cost" of things per the price tag. And if they want something in particular, they will save for it. Even my son, he can read and understand the price tags of things and what is "expensive" or not. And also they learn about math.


answers from Dallas on

Children will model your behavior.

Our daughter models us... she knows we live debt free and it takes a lot of self discipline and delayed gratification. She knows that these 2 characteristics and being debt free are needed in order to achieve wealth. She also knows the importance of giving.

She has learned if she spends her check (she is on my payroll, 17 yrs old), there is no more unless she has a babysitting job or another way to earn money.

We started her at a very young age with her money and she tends to not spend unless she really needs something because she likes looking at her savings balance.

Teach delayed gratification.

It also helps to have a goal they are working toward to save the money and understand that money does not grow on trees.


answers from Chicago on

Well, my son finds coins around the house and he can keep one and put the rest in the coin jar for "savings" he often puts them all in.
You can go online or thru a magazine and find an item you BOTH want to save up for - A new handbag, A new video game (my house at least) and clip/print the picture an make the thermometer things - get a piggy bank for each of you (dollar store) and make a big deal of it.


answers from Columbia on

We have envelopes. One says "Savings-20% Minimum" and the other says "Tithe-10% Minimum."

I told them that when they reach $25 in the savings envelope, I'll take them down to the bank and open them each a bank account of their own.

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