ALLOWANCES: The Nickels & Dimes of it All

By Katherine Ryan on August 23, 2017

   ALLOWANCES: The Nickels and Dimes of it All

In my last blog I talked about all the reasons why your child/ren would benefit from receiving an allowance & in this blog I am going to give you my thoughts on how much that allowance should be.

There are two schools of thought; allowances should be tied to chores and the opposing view, allowances should be independent of chores. I suggest a blending of both and here is how it can work.  Think about making chores part of the expectation for everyone (age 2 and older) in the family. Everybody has basic chores that they are required to do in order to keep the household running as smoothly as it can. These chores are not attached to money or an allowance; these chores are part of the basic expectations.

How much should I give as an allowance? I recommend either 50 cents for each year of your child’s age or $1.00 for each year of your child’s age. The guideline you choose would match what you expect your child to be responsible to buy or save for with their allowance. I can see how 50 cents per year up to 10 years of age and then switching to $1.00 per year would work nicely for most.

When should I start giving my child an allowance? The best time to begin is when you think your child understands the concept of money and how to use it. Ask some questions… “If you had $2.00 what would you do with it?” “How many quarters make a dollar?”  “If you had $5.00 and spent $2.00, how much would you have left?”

Okay, back to chores…
So, everyone has their expected chores and, I would suggest, an opportunity to make money by doing and completing to your satisfaction, additional chores. Some of these additional chores may include washing windows, cleaning out the fridge along with whatever chores you hate the most.

Below are some resources for allowances and chore charts by age to help. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

& thanks for stopping by,


Previous Blog on Allowances

Article on Allowances & Chores

Chore Chart

~Katherine Ryan is a LMHC (Licensed Mental Health Counselor) practicing in Topsfield, Massachusetts where she enjoys helping adults, children and teens become unstuck through counseling, mediation or equine assisted learning and growth opportunities.

~Nina is a 3 year old Standard Poodle who enjoys playing catch, hiking, belly rubs and going to work with Katherine


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