How much should a kid get for allowance?
Allowance can be a great way to motivate your children to complete their household chores. It can also be a useful tool to start teaching your kids about money management and improving their financial literacy. If you have decided that you want to give your kids an allowance, you might have some lingering questions like how much money should a kid get for allowance? Should it be a weekly allowance, bi-weekly, or monthly? And, when is it time to stop giving your kids an allowance?
Average allowance for kids
So, how much should a kid get for allowance? Ultimately, it’s up to you – what you feel is fair, and what you can afford. Other factors you will want to consider when determining how much your children should get in the allowance are their age and the types of chores they are responsible for. Also, consider what you expect them to pay for. Is this just extra pocket money for them to spend on toys or candy? Or, do you expect your pre-teen or teen to use their money to pay for clothes or bus fare? You can also think about if you want to give a fixed allowance (same amount of weekly or monthly allowance), or a chore-based allowance (based on the price of specific chores they complete).
While it is an individual choice, many of us are still curious about how much allowance other parents are giving their children. What is the average and how has it changed over the years? According to a 2021 report by RoosterMoney, the average allowance is $7.98 per week for children ages four to 14.
How much allowance should a child get by age?
Many parents determine how much allowance they will give their children based on their age. RoosterMoney (an allowance and chore app for kids), provides data on the average fixed amount of pocket money given per week to children from age four to 14.
- 4-year-olds – $4.18
- 5-year-olds – $4.79
- 6-year-olds – $5.82
- 7-year-olds – $7.42
- 8-year-olds – $8.01
- 9-year-olds – $8.71
- 10-year-olds – $9.49
- 11-year-olds – $10.43
- 12 year olds – $11.91
- 13 year olds – $12.62
- 14 year olds – $13.87
If you choose to use a chore-based allowance system, you will have to agree on a particular price per chore. The experts at RoosterMoney recommend sitting down with your kids and negotiating a price for each job. This will help them to feel more involved in the entire process and give them a better understanding of why the value of particular chores or tasks differ.
How often to give your kids their allowance?
Providing a weekly allowance is probably the most common strategy. However, it is really your decision how you want to structure the regularity of your kids allowance. Another way is to structure their allowance on the same schedule that you get paid at work. If you get a paycheck every two weeks, you can give them their allowance every two weeks. This is also a good way to start a conversation about work, paychecks, money management, and the “pay yourself first” strategy.
If you have older kids, you might also be curious about when you should think about stopping an allowance. There is quite a spectrum for when parents decide to hand over the financial reins to their child. Some parents continue to provide their kids with an allowance until they are finished college. This is because they don’t want their college student to feel the pressure of having to work while they study. Other parents might decide to stop giving an allowance when their child has secured their first part-time job and is earning money on their own. Again, the choice is up to you and what works best for your family.
How to structure an allowance for kids
When trying to structure your allowance system, think about why you want to give your kids allowance in the first place. What are your goals in instituting an allowance? Are you trying to motivate your children to do more around the house? Are you using allowance as a way to teach them financial responsibility? Do you want to provide them with an allowance so they can start to get first-hand experience using their own money?
Thinking through your goals, and even engaging your children in these conversations, can help you to develop the right type of allowance structure for you and your family.
After you talk through the “why” of setting up an allowance system, determine which allowance strategy you will use. The fixed amount method, where your child earns the same amount of money each week or each month. Or, the chore-based strategy where you pay them based on the specific chores they complete.
Your goals can help to drive this decision. Many parents don’t want to use a chore-based method because they feel their children should do chores no matter what. They shouldn’t be compensated to help around the house.
The fixed-rate method can overcome this issue by framing allowance as a training tool. Instead of giving kids money to do the things around the house, they should do as contributing members of a household, it is used as a way to teach children about money.
The fixed-rate strategy can also be used to prevent your kids from continuously asking you for money. They know how much they will be given each week or every two weeks and it’s up to them to budget accordingly.
Finally, it’s important that you discuss allowance expectations with your children. For instance, you expect that all of the agreed-upon chores are completed by Saturday afternoon at 12:00 pm if they want to earn their full allowance. If they do not complete all of their chores on time, what happens? Do you deduct some of their allowances? These are the types of questions you can think through. After you have made your decisions, stick to them.
— By Jessica Martel