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3 Big Reasons I Pay My Kids to do Jobs (not chores) Around the House

3 Big Reasons I Pay My Kids to do Jobs (not chores) Around the House

Pin image for 3 Big Reasons I Pay My Kids to do Jobs (not chores) Around the HouseAre you currently paying your kids to take care of certain jobs around the house? Or do you give your children a weekly allowance without requiring them to do anything to earn that money?

A while back I had an idea. I was always buying things for my kids and I thought, why don’t I take that money I was going to spend on them anyway and actually teach them some money lessons instead. Why don’t I pay my kids to do jobs! I love a good teachable moment! 

Of course, my kids have chores that need to be done regularly around the house. Think: making their beds and doing their laundry. I’m not talking about those things. I’m talking about the things that go above and beyond the normal daily household routine, like things that could be taken off my plate. For example: vacuuming the stairs, cleaning the microwave, or dusting the baseboards and shutters. Now, I pay my kids for doing those things.

If you’re wondering why, here are the 3 main reasons I pay my kids for doing these jobs around our house: 

I want to teach them the basics of money management. 

These are things like saving, spending, and giving. These are basic money lessons they are going to need to learn eventually. Why not start earlier on?

So, I’ll ask them what it is that they want to buy and they can slowly work up to saving for that thing. I have them divide the money into those 3 categories. How much do they want to put toward their goal, how much do they want to have available to spend on a treat, and how much do they want to put towards charity or gifts for others. 

Now, this concept of teaching them to save what they’ve earned is really helpful in letting them in on how to budget their pay in the future. It starts them out on those habits but on a smaller scale. It will lead to a healthy relationship with money once they start earning their own income.

What I’ve noticed is that when they are using their own money, they are a bit more conservative with their spending. This tells me that what I’m teaching is really sinking in!

I want them to learn to have a solid work ethic. 

They know this is a job and they know they have to do it well. Just like when they get out into the real world, they need to do their job properly in order to get paid. If they rush through it or don’t do a good job, I have them do it over before paying them. This teaches them the kind of work ethic I want them to have. Life isn’t just about having fun, you need to work hard, too. I always tell my kids: work hard, play harder. 

In our house, the kids do their jobs on Saturday. They have to get their jobs done before they even think about opening their iPad or turning the TV on. 

It’s all about responsibility. 

My kids are each assigned different jobs and they are each responsible for making sure their job gets done and that it gets done well. If they are assigned a job, they need to do it and take ownership of their responsibilities. 

Allowances vs. Jobs

If you are one who gives an allowance to your kids, I highly recommend you switch things up a bit. At the very least, in the verbiage. Think about what the word “allowance” says to your kids as compared to calling it a job and paying them for doing that job. When kids get an allowance, sometimes they feel entitled to the money instead of having to work for it. As adults, we know this isn’t how the real world works. We need to work in order to earn money, we aren’t just given money for existing. (though that would be nice, right?) It’s a tiny shift in language that could make a huge shift in your kids mindset and attitude. 

If you’d like to learn more about budgeting, I’ll be hosting a Happy Family Budgeting Workshop in just a few weeks. Head here for all of the details and to get signed up!

Practical Steps for Creating Realistic Routines

Practical Steps for Creating Realistic Routines

Pin image for realistic routines.We know that helping our kids develop realistic routines and good habits is high priority. But, knowing we should and actually setting a system in place are two completely different things. 

We want our kids to learn responsibility and accountability so that they can establish positive habits, stick to daily routines and eventually become fully functioning independent adults. It’s okay to know what you want for your kids but not be 100% sure of how to make it a reality. 

Don’t worry, I’m here to help you get on the right path to forming realistic routines with responsible and accountable independent kids! In this post, we’ll talk about why routines are important, how to plan a realistic routine for your family and actually achieve it, and we’ll talk about what tasks or chores are appropriate for your kids at each age. 

Why are routines important?

Routines are important for both individuals and families. For individuals, establishing routines can make you feel more in control and focused. For a family, it can create a calm living atmosphere where everyone contributes for the common good. Everyone knows their role to play, what to do and when to do it. Family members depend on each other and trust that each member will contribute. 

Use a daily planner to help set realistic routines.

Without a set routine, habits just don’t stick. Research shows that it takes 21 days for something to become a habit. Imagine how smooth your household will run if you simply take 3 weeks to help your kids establish healthy, responsibility building habits in your home. 

How do you make your dream routine a reality?

  • First, visualize what a well run home looks like to you. This will be different for each family – it’s okay if your well run home is different from mine, it’s all about finding what works for your family. 
  • Ask yourself what needs to change and what needs to happen daily, weekly, and monthly in order for your house to run smoothly. 
  • Consider which of those tasks can be done by each child based on their age, physical abilities, and maturity level. Scroll down to the next section for a list of general age-appropriate tasks.
  • Figure out what motivates your kids. Is it money, gifts, more screen time? Decide what you will use as motivation and what your children will need to do to earn it. 
  • Hold a family meeting where you explain very clearly to your kids what your new routine will look like. Let the kids know what they will need to do, how often, and what they will earn by doing it.
  • Get started. Don’t slack off – remember it takes 21 days to form a habit! Put in the hard work at the beginning and eventually (sooner rather than later) you’ll be able to back off and watch your kids take accountability for their own tasks. 
  • Be patient and flexible but remain consistent. Each week, evaluate how you can support your child and determine if anything could have been done differently or more effectively. 
  • Sit back and watch with pride as your household runs smoothly, your children take responsibility for their chores and take pride in their contributions to the household. Enjoy the peace of mind you now have knowing that your child can stand on his/her own two feet!

Make sure chores are age appropriate for realistic routines

At what age can my kids start to get involved?

A while back, I asked some fellow moms in a mom group what tasks their kids help with or chores they do and what their ages are. The following is a list of age-appropriate chores starting with 2-year-olds. Yes, two is not too early to start with simple tasks and routines around the house! This helps to build responsibility and accountability at an early age.

2-3 Year-olds

  • Put dishes in the sink
  • Put laundry in the hamper
  • Help feed pets
  • Help with sweeping and dusting
  • Put things in the trash can
  • Sort items
  • Help push buttons
  • Put away toys and books

4-5 Year-olds

  • Set the table
  • Help clear the table
  • Straighten their room
  • Help put laundry in the washer
  • Clean up after playing, reading, or crafting 
  • Keep bedroom neat

Make sure chores are age appropriate for realistic routines

6-7 Year-olds

  • Clear the table
  • Switch laundry from the washer to dryer
  • Take laundry out of the dryer
  • Make bed
  • Feed pets
  • Empty dishwasher

8-11 Year-olds

  • Take care of pets
  • Do their own laundry (wash, dry, fold, put away)
  • Load and unload the dishwasher
  • Wash dishes
  • Mop floors
  • Dust
  • Clean baseboards
  • Take out the trash and recycling
  • Vacuum
  • Pull weeds and rake leaves
  • Clean and organize their own bedroom

Are you ready to set realistic routines in your home by implementing a family chore routine in your home but you just don’t know how to get started or get yourself organized? We’ve got you covered! Grab our totally FREE Family Chore and Money System Action Guide and we will walk you through the step-by-step process of designing, implementing, and sticking to a plan that works for your family.