Allowance Is Like Welfare

A Twitter listener asks what Dave thinks about allowance for kids under 10. Dave says he doesn't like the term "allowance" and instead prefers "commissions" for chores.

QUESTION: A Twitter listener asks what Dave thinks about allowance for kids under 10. Dave says he doesn't like the term "allowance" and instead prefers "commissions" for chores.

ANSWER: I don't do allowance for anyone. Allowance sounds like welfare. We put our kids when they were that age on commission. Work, get paid; don't work, don't get paid. We put a little chore board—a dry erase board—on the refrigerator door, and when you did that chore, you got paid that dollar amount. If you didn't do any work, you didn't get any money. By the way, you have to do some work just because you're part of the family. You do some things for your mom because you love your mom, and you're going to do them because I said so. Some things you do because I'm creating teachable moments. Then, when they take that money that they have "earned," we will divide it into three envelopes: give, spend, and save. They get to learn all three of those things while they're learning to work. Teaching children that there's an emotional connection between work and money is a great thing to do when they're five so that when they're 55, they're not clueless. Work creates money every time.