As a father of three boys (5, 7, and 10) and an investment professional, I’m always finding new ways to teach my kids about taking the long view with their money, goals, and happiness. One habit that has worked hugely well for our family is the old-fashioned allowance.
My wife and I try to instill in our children that we are a team, and together we make the household operate. The boys have typical responsibilities like putting their stinky clothes in a hamper, picking up their 1000 nerf gun bullets, or putting their dirty dishes in the sink (maybe even in the dishwasher). In exchange for their labor, the boys get paid.
Every Sunday, after donuts, is payday. In the McDaniel household, $2 a week is the going rate for an A+ job taking care of your family responsibilities. Fall a little short; you get a little less.
The benefits? We get to communicate our family values of hard work, kindness, and teamwork through direct experience. Also, great conversations: What they want to do with their hard-earned money – Do they spend it, save it, or give it away? How much goes in each bucket?
New York Times columnist Ron Leiber’s book, The Opposite of Spoiled, is a resource that I’ve found invaluable. Want more? Call, email, or set up a time to talk more about how we can help set your kids up for long-term financial success.