Rising Tide Blog

Pocket Money for Kids: It’s the Lessons That Matter Not The Amount

Posted by Matt Hale

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How much pocket money should we give our kids? It’s the age-old question that comes up time and time again.

Stats from a recent Commonwealth Bank survey tell us that 80% of parents do give their kids pocket money, with the amounts varying across different age groups:

  • 4-9 year olds pocket around $7
  • 10-12 year olds around $11
  • 13-15 year olds around $14

Linking Pocket Money To Reward

Most parents attempt to link certain behaviours from the kids to the pocket money, so it is seen as a reward with performing chores and good grades, which seem to be the most popular carrots used.

I think parents in many ways are missing the key point about pocket money. In giving our kids money there is far more we can teach them than just seeing money as simply a reward for effort.

It’s not so much the amount of money given, or what our children need to do to earn the pocket money that is important, but instead the life lesson that our kids can learn through the money that matters most.

Money Lessons Learned From Pocket Money

Let’s be honest, pocket money is simply for the kids to spend as they please throughout the week, For any big-ticket items, Mum and Dad are picking up the tab.

This is where things become really important when it comes to what we teach our kids.

Remember this, every action we take as parents will impact our kids. Using credit cards, buying things for instant gratification on hire purchase; all these spending habits will be copied by our children later in life.

Likewise, how we help our children spend their pocket money. Such as encouraging them to put a $1 a week aside for charitable giving, will equally impact their decisions around spending money later in life.

So let’s say one of our youngsters elects to spend their pocket money through the week and then come the weekend has their hand out for some extra money so they can have a day out with friends.

Here is the moment for a life lesson, one that teaches them the importance of considering their options before making a decision to spend money. This can be done by simply saying, “Sorry you chose to spend your money elsewhere, so that’s it you are not heading out”.

It might not make you the most popular parent in the world, but you can be assured of one thing; come the next week what your child elects to spend their money will be determined by a different factor than simply want, and what a lesson that is.

Give in, hand over the cash, and you can expect that hand to be out every weekend, so you may as well treble the weekly pocket money. Heck, why not just leave your wallet or purse on the table and the kids can help themselves.

Become An Ideal Role Model For Your Kids Spending Habits

Every decision you make around money is important. When it comes to finance, you are your kid’s role model. They will be a carbon copy of you with their own spending habits as an adult. It’s a responsibility to make sure that when it comes to money and finance, you are the best role model you can be.

If you think you could do with some help becoming the financial role model you have always wanted to be for your kids, then why not get in touch with one of Rising Tide’s friendly financial advisers by calling 03 370 330 287 today.