Giving kids an allowance has been around forever. Sometimes they are given for doing chores and other times just a set amount weekly. Neither of those methods is necessarily wrong, parents should always do what they feel is best for their kids. But, hear me out on this one, scrapping that allowance and paying your kids commission for work around the house may be something you should try!
Giving your kids chores has so many benefits for them. It gives them a sense of accomplishment while making them feel they are contributing to the family. It helps teach them to be more independent adults with skills they will need. I ran across a post on Dave Ramsey’s site about why your kids don’t need an allowance and really loved his take on it, and setting them up for future success. He says that even the word allowance implies a child is entitled to a certain amount of money just for living & breathing.
As adults, we all know that that isn’t how money works. We all want the best for our kids and want them to have success as adults. But they can’t do that without guidance from us.
Using a commission system for kids teaches them the value of hard work. You work, you earn money. You don’t work, you earn nothing. Honestly, that is one of the most important things we can teach our kids. Let them learn from their success and failures. I adapted the system in my own way and added Daily bonus chores to give my son chances to earn more by working harder. See what I did there, another life lesson for him.
On Sunday evenings, we sit down and add up his commissions, and subtract the fines if there are any, and figure out what he earned for the week. For him, Sunday is payday. He then has 3 envelopes to split his paycheck into. He puts 10% into savings, 10% into giving, and then the rest goes into spending. My goal with that is for him to learn not to get a paycheck and then just spend it all immediately. Yup, that’s right, another important lesson. Read below on how I use the commission system and don’t forget to snag your free printable at the end!
Side Note: For preschool age children it is best to start with a system that pays immediately. Make them a chart with pictures of the chores and then how much it will pay then pay as they complete it. Let them put a sticker on a chart as they complete tasks. Of course, at their age, it won’t need to be done perfectly. It works as a great building block for them when they are old enough to start having paydays and more jobs.
How to use the commission system
- Plan out ahead of time what your child’s jobs and commissions will be. Use age & abilities as your guide. The way I use mine is that the job must be done every day of the week to earn the commission. You can’t show up for work only one day a week and get paid for the whole week. You can choose to make it a daily or weekly, whichever works best for you and your kids.
- Daily bonus jobs are a chance for your kids to earn more by doing extra work. This can be any extra help around the house that can be done daily or a few times a week. It can even be helping you with certain chores you do.
- Set the rules for the fines. Can be behavior or actions. Once again, the main thing is what works best for your family.
- Decide what day of the week will be payday. Also, set up your envelopes if you choose to have your child split their paycheck into spending, saving, and giving. When doing this explain the importance to them of each one. For the savings envelope, they can pick something big out that they really want and work towards saving up for it. We put a minimum of 10% into savings, but if Little Man really wants a specific Lego set, he will sometimes decide to put in more. I leave that choice up to him.
- I also have a section on there for electronics time. If you have a set amount of time for kids and their electronics each day, you can set a value for tickets then allow them to purchase and use those tickets in exchange for extra time.
Click the image above to get your free printable!
What are your favorite ways to reward kids for doing chores around the house?