piggy bank

His kid wants allowance for chores

TOH SMALL 11Dear Housewife:

Is it ok to tie allowance amounts to chores?

– Allowance for chores

Dear Allowance for Chores: 

In our household, the Jones’s definition of allowance is “we allow you to live and bathe at our 24-hour-all-you-can -eat buffet—for free!” Needless to say, Eve and Solomon receive an “allowance” everyday! We do not have a monetary allowance system. We do give financial rewards for a job well done at report card time. I’m reluctant to tie allowance to chores because it of the incorrect message that it potentially sends; “I’m paying you to function as a responsible member of our family.” Chores reinforce the idea that our family is a team and that we must care for our home and one another. We must work together for the good of the family unit and not be self-centered. Chores teach children the idea of serving without expecting anything in return. Chores also prepare our children to live as responsible adults, keeping a clean and orderly home. I would only tie allowance to chores if the chore is above the child’s normal responsibility, e.g., painting the fence, etc. I would be more inclined to tie chores to privileges and not allowance. However, if the allowance is a “privilege” then it should be withheld along with other privileges if chores and other expectations are not met.

Featured Illustration by Jim McHugh.  Piggybank photo © Can Stock Photo Inc.

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I do agree that children should be responsible for some household chores and that allowance for doing them is not to be expected. However, I do not have an issue with giving money for things like movies, personal snacks, etc.

Solomon Jones

Yes they have to be responsible. I certainly don’t mind giving them money for recreational activities. I guess the difference is in paying them for stuff they should be doing anyway.


HI LaVeta, I am in agreement with you. Children should not be paid to pull their part as part of the family. and 9 times out of 10 they are the ones who make the mess, so why should they be paid and “allowance” to clean it up. I never gave mines an allowance. It taught them a very important lesson in life. If you want something, it will not be given to you, you have to go out there and work. Besides, we not only provide room board and shelter, and food but we clothe them. so requiring them to do house work is a small thing to ask, require of them. keep on writing proud and happy for both of you.


Great answer!!! When my kids were younger, they wanted allowance for everything because “so and so” down the street gets it. It was a uphill battle to reverse their mindset after it became infected from another households parenting that did not agree with mine.

RealtorCarol1 .

AMEN!!! My children do not get rewarded for the things they should be doing. Ever on the honor roll my kiddies get a pat on the back and how can this be better? You did the dishes. GREAT. Did you enjoy the hot water that came out of the faucet. I’m sure did–according to your 20 minute shower. You’re welcome! You cleaned your room and put away the clothes I bought. Sweet. Small price to pay for rent free living. You’re welcome. I do not ever remember the utility companies giving my a break because I paid my bill on time. Not once did I receive a monetary award for raising model citizens. Say NO to the entitlements these crumb snatchers seem to take for granted anyway.