We’ve long preached the wisdom of teaching kids to manage money by using the allowance as a teaching tool, not as tied to chores. There comes a time, however, when it pays – to pay for kids’ work. Summertime is prime time for pay jobs.
Our kids have summer chores – we’re playing a zone defense on yardwork this summer. Each kid has their own area of the yard they’re responsible for watering, weeding, fertilizing, and dressing up. But they each have bonus “pay” jobs as well:
- Natasha is transferring video from tape to an external HD. She earns $2.50 for each hour of raw video, plus $5.00 per hour of edited video.
- McGyver is learning video marketing; he’s making finished promotional videos for our travel and financial education sites.
- Domo is our Google Analytics pro. He’s learning how to do SEO and traffic analytics to monitor and drive web traffic.
Each of our kids has regular daily and weekly chores. These aren’t a requirement for earning an allowance, they’re table stakes for being a productive member of the family. But in the summer, they have a lot of spare time. They’re not of driving age yet, so it’s tough to get a job outside the house. Instead, we give them an opportunity to take on a summer job – inside the house – doing something that we actually value, and which will build a life skill for them as well. I don’t imagine that all three will take good advantage of the offer; maybe only one or two of them will work consistently learning a new skill and earning some additional income. We figure it is just another step in their growing financial literacy: those who work hard earn money. Those who work harder earn more. Another important lesson when you’re working to teach kids to manage money!
Take a look at what you’ve got going on around your house or your home business. What big jobs do you need done? What do you have that rise above the level of chores for kids? Could you find a way to get those big jobs done by hiring your kids to get these big jobs done?