When deciding how to educate your kids about money, important questions come up: Should you pay your child an allowance for doing household chores or should he do these tasks without compensation because he's "earning his keep"? And when it comes to a job well done like receiving an "A" in school, is it OK to offer money as a reward? Find out how parents and experts weigh in on teaching your child the value of a hard-earned dollar.
Steve Siebold gives this advice: "Parents should have a combination of tasks that have to be done daily or weekly (taking out garbage or general yard work) to provide the basis for a weekly allowance, and extra chores that happen periodically, like cleaning the car or shoveling snow, that kids get paid extra for. If they want money to buy a toy, you want them to look around the house and think, 'How can I help? What can I do to solve a problem and earn money for the toy?'" Steve also says parents must be consistent about enforcing the completion of chores. If your child's base allowance is $10, but two chores aren't done, the allowance should be less. If there is something going on that kids really want money for, tell them it's an advance.
Ann Morgan James doesn't agree with allowance, but she does believe kids should be able to earn money. Her solution? They should make money outside of the home. "Teach your kids they have earning potential. Help them start a business. Sit with your kids and evaluate where you live and what business they can start. Help them think about the neighbors (their potential customers), what they need and what service they can offer. Of course, my personal favorite is the business my son Jack started: Jack's Garbage Valet, where he takes his neighbor's garbage cans in and out for $10 a month — but I'm admittedly biased."
Should money be given as a reward for a job well done? For example: Cash for good grades.
Meg Akabas, parenting educator, founder of Parenting Solutions and a mother of four from New York, says no. "When a child receives money for things we want them to do because they are the right thing to do and bring their own rewards, they come to believe they are doing those things only for the monetary reward. The wrong message is delivered because essentially, it's a bribe."
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