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Old 22.12.2011, 12:49
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Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

Hi all

We had a talk yesterday with our 15-year old daughter. She gets CHF 55.- per month of pocket month, to spend on whatever she wants. We still pay for her clothes, phone (prepaid CHF 50.- per month) etc. The talk was heated, she's telling us all her friends get something around 150.- to 200.- per month. We do have a rule that if she breaks her curfew, her pocket money is reduced. She's managed to not get any pocket money two out of the last 4 months.

The http://www.budgetberatung.ch/Kinder-...che.110.0.html states that an amount of 55.- is appropriate. Plus, we want to give her a strong incentive to be home on time, as she often seems to think she's more about 19-years old than 15, and should thus be entitled to stay out all night.

How much pocket money do your teenagers get, and what strings are attached?

Thanks
Simon
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Old 22.12.2011, 12:54
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

I know that I was the same age 10 years ago and it was in England, but I didn't get any pocket money. My parents paid for my clothes and that was it (in fact, I got quite a lot of hand-me-downs from my older brother). I earned money playing music in a group and helping my dad out at work (he's self-employed). They bought me the things I needed, but anything I wanted I had to earn (or I was given a tenner for a night out if I was being nice).

You're right not to increase the amount, especially if she's breaking her curfew. If you give her money when she's behaving like that, then what lesson is she going to learn?

NB: I should point out that my parents are far from destitute - they're "middle class". It's not that they couldn't afford to give me more, it's just that they were trying to teach me the value of money.
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Old 22.12.2011, 12:56
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

At that age, about CHF 200, BUT they had to buy their own clothes, snacks, etc.

Tom
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Old 22.12.2011, 12:56
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

We give our (almost) 14 year old and 12 year old 10.- per week, based on whether they do their chores or not. Anything they do extra they get a small bonus. The oldest also looks after a friend's toddler once a week at our place and gets paid for that.
150.- to 200.- is bloody excessive IMHO.
What we have been considering though, is to set them up an account each, into which we will put in a certain amount each month, which can eventually go towards driving lessons, trips abroad etc.
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Old 22.12.2011, 12:58
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

I also never got any pocket money. I do think it is a good idea for children to have some money as it teached them to budget and only buy things that they really need.

Ask her why she should get more. Why she thinks she deserves more.
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Old 22.12.2011, 12:58
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

I don't have any teenagers but I can say that when I was 15, I worked part-time and so obtained money that way. I never received pocket money. However, if I was giving up a Saturday, for instance, to help my parents with something strenuous in the garden, I'd get 'rewarded' with some sort of treat (could be clothing, sweets..etc). I always had friends who received pocket money but this was dependent on specific chores.

Not sure if a 15-year-old can work here but it's a great option if she wants a couple hundred a month (or more). =)
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:01
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

I start to babysit at 12 and work in a restaurant at 15. Never had pocket money from my parents and I still had to help in the house.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:01
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

I uszed to have to mow the lawn, wash the car, cut trees, etc...

I think a 15 year old girl can do things like that. Wash the car at the very least. :-)
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:02
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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Hi all

We had a talk yesterday with our 15-year old daughter. She gets CHF 55.- per month of pocket month, to spend on whatever she wants. We still pay for her clothes, phone (prepaid CHF 50.- per month) etc. The talk was heated, she's telling us all her friends get something around 150.- to 200.- per month. We do have a rule that if she breaks her curfew, her pocket money is reduced. She's managed to not get any pocket money two out of the last 4 months.

The http://www.budgetberatung.ch/Kinder-...che.110.0.html states that an amount of 55.- is appropriate. Plus, we want to give her a strong incentive to be home on time, as she often seems to think she's more about 19-years old than 15, and should thus be entitled to stay out all night.
Sounds like you're doing the right thing. I wouldn't change the amount.

It's a shame more parents don't do what you are doing. Good luck.

I'll come to you for advice when ours are teenagers.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:06
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

Talk about a fiery topic with teenage girls, it's a minefield !!!

We have introduced a 'Market Related' system into the house, so we can show them what the real world is like outside...

For example I will lend a daughter CHF100 @ an interest rate of 10% per week, she can pay me back in cash or chores, if the debt is not paid off by the end of the week it rolls-over till the next where it is compounded, this rarely happens and every chore is fought over...Our home is spotless, the girls respect money and we don't pay for a free ride!
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:07
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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Ask her why she should get more. Why she thinks she deserves more.
"Because my friends get more" I suspect would be the answer... followed by "I hate you" (my adolescence was not so long ago...).

The problem with Switzerland is that SO many kids are completely spoilt here. I was covering some classes for another teacher and I took a 13-year-old who had an iPhone, a Wii, a DS with "hundreds of games" and he thought that was perfectly normal. In fact, when I pulled my ancient Nokia out of my bag to put it on silent, he had a look of disgust on his face.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:07
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

Norther nmethod:
Prussian father here: The pocket money was given after we came back on time. Not one minute late. Thus having money for the next evening out meant being on time and alcohol free the previous time. The starting capital was to be paid back, of course.


Southern method:
French mother here: What ever you do in the evenings, if you don't do it with your maman, it's not worth doing it. Thus the need of a double-bookkeeping on school food, groceries and bread money in order to gather up a war treasure.

Now I'm sure you understand the European political and financial crisis better.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:20
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

Wow, what a tremendous response in such a short time! Thanks a bunch to everyone.

A lot of you are telling us how it was when you were young. I'm not sure if there's a significance there. It seems that nowadays there is quite some peer pressure when it comes to new phones, ipods etc. Same for clothes brands, shoes etc. Maybe our kids are simply spoiled, but putting our teen in the position where everyone else have the newest gadgets and she's the lonely poor kid might cause a rather traumatic teenage-hood. Of course this is a horrible situation and society shouldn't have gotten there, but we also can't just close our eyes. So, do we spoil our teen too, and make her happy among her peers, or do we show her the good old value of work and austerity?

In the long run, the latter is probably better, but only if the feeling of inferiority during the teenage years doesn't linger ..

Simon
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:26
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

When someone I don't know at all asks a question like this, I have no answers but a load of return questions. We really need to hear your daughter too.
You don't say, 'my daughter and I had a chat yesterday'. You say
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We had a talk yesterday with our 15-year old daughter.
which, to a teenager translates as 'my parents were on at me again'.

You say that this money is to spend on anything she likes. What does she like? You say that you buy her clothes. Are they clothes that she likes or would she prefer to go shopping with her friends? (Some teenagers are quite happy to go around second-hand stores and pick up bargains). Our girls had 'clothes money' at a very tender age. Our neighbour's daughter wanted all designer clothes (like her Mum); ours learned fast that blowing ones funds on a pair of skin-tight jeans in April is not a good idea if you are still growing.
Does your daughter have travel expenses? Does she eat out? What do her friends spend their money on? As I said, more questions than answers.

Some wise body once said: Teenagers are going to be unhappy whatever they do, but they would prefer to be unhappy doing things of their own choice.

Stick it out. Adult daughters are brilliant!
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:27
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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Wow, what a tremendous response in such a short time! Thanks a bunch to everyone.

A lot of you are telling us how it was when you were young. I'm not sure if there's a significance there. It seems that nowadays there is quite some peer pressure when it comes to new phones, ipods etc. Same for clothes brands, shoes etc. Maybe our kids are simply spoiled, but putting our teen in the position where everyone else have the newest gadgets and she's the lonely poor kid might cause a rather traumatic teenage-hood. Of course this is a horrible situation and society shouldn't have gotten there, but we also can't just close our eyes. So, do we spoil our teen too, and make her happy among her peers, or do we show her the good old value of work and austerity?

In the long run, the latter is probably better, but only if the feeling of inferiority during the teenage years doesn't linger ..

Simon
I completely understand what you're saying and agree, but there were times when I felt like everyone else got given something for nothing (a lot of my friends got huge quantities of pocket money and did nothing to help in the house, or got bought the newest gadets etc and I didn't) and I feel like I'm better off for it. I know how to budget, I don't just flush cash down the toilet, so I'm never in a really dire position financially. Some of my friends just have no idea how to save and are constantly stressed about it.

At the end of the day, it's your decision. I would strongly advise against giving her stuff especially if she's not behaving how she should (e.g. coming home late and disobeying you). It will only teach her that there are no consequences to her actions.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:30
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

You have to teach her the value of money. I am strict with my 15 year old, who gets 40 per month (in the UK) plus a phone and I buy her clothes/shoes etc when she needs them.

She has to budget for movies, meals out with friends etc. She moans but she also understands money doesn't grow on trees. When she breaks her phone she doesn't get a new one straight away, etc. These lessons have to be learned.

I regularly tell her that even with her small pocket money she is in the wealthiest 1% of children in the world, so shut up and move on. It normally puts it in perspective and the message gets home.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:30
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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Talk about a fiery topic with teenage girls, it's a minefield !!!

We have introduced a 'Market Related' system into the house, so we can show them what the real world is like outside...

For example I will lend a daughter CHF100 @ an interest rate of 10% per week, she can pay me back in cash or chores, if the debt is not paid off by the end of the week it rolls-over till the next where it is compounded, this rarely happens and every chore is fought over...Our home is spotless, the girls respect money and we don't pay for a free ride!
I like what you're teaching here and definitely respect it. But me personally, I could never lend a family member money and take interest on it. In the real world, I actually will give family money - not lend it. I do, however, want to know why they need it before I decide to give it. What's interesting since taking this approach though is that I am still always paid back, even though it's not a loan.

But again, as parents you have to choose what works and it sounds like this system you have is working really well for your family.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:30
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

You could do without the strop, but then she's a 15 year old girl and it doesn't get more complicated than that I guess.

55.- a month, even if you pay for everything else is not much. Let's say 4 weekends in a month, that's less than 15 francs a weekend. A coffee at Starbucks is at least 5 francs, that's 30% of your weekend budget down. By a movie ticket or a snack and you're bust.

I have seen families dole out money on a needs basis. 'I'm going out' - 'here's some money have a good time'. I guess pocket money teaches kids to budget.

I think 55 is on the low end of things, strop or no strop.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:34
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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55.- a month, even if you pay for everything else is not much. Let's say 4 weekends in a month, that's less than 15 francs a weekend. A coffee at Starbucks is at least 5 francs, that's 30% of your weekend budget down. By a movie ticket or a snack and you're bust.

I have seen families dole out money on a needs basis. 'I'm going out' - 'here's some money have a good time'. I guess pocket money teaches kids to budget.

I think 55 is on the low end of things, strop or no strop.
I disagree here because in my mind a visit to starbucks plus a movie and a snack every weekend is a luxury and not a neccessity. It's Ok if you want your kids to do that, but I think it is spoiling them.
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Old 22.12.2011, 13:35
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Re: Amount of pocket money for 15-year old

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Wow, what a tremendous response in such a short time! Thanks a bunch to everyone.

A lot of you are telling us how it was when you were young. I'm not sure if there's a significance there. It seems that nowadays there is quite some peer pressure when it comes to new phones, ipods etc. Same for clothes brands, shoes etc. Maybe our kids are simply spoiled, but putting our teen in the position where everyone else have the newest gadgets and she's the lonely poor kid might cause a rather traumatic teenage-hood. Of course this is a horrible situation and society shouldn't have gotten there, but we also can't just close our eyes. So, do we spoil our teen too, and make her happy among her peers, or do we show her the good old value of work and austerity?

In the long run, the latter is probably better, but only if the feeling of inferiority during the teenage years doesn't linger ..

Simon
Aw bless. Must be tough being a parent and making decisions like this - I've got a while before I'm there with the teenagers.

But overall, I don't think it has truly changed that much. Kids always have and/or want new and trendy stuff. What has changed is the stuff itself. Clothing trends are always there as are other toys and things. What was cool then isn't cool now but I'd argue the same pressures exist.

I vote for a third option - show her the "good old value of work and austerity" so she has the confidence to create happiness amongst her peers.
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