Why You Should Be Charging your (working) Teenager Board/Rent
Wow… how brave am I writing a Blog about this? You are either agreeing with me right now, or (more than likely) disagreeing with me – for your own, very valid reasons…. And I get it; Honestly, I do! However, hear me out here. Educate Them
I would guess that the majority of parents who have “kids at home” employed in their first, part time job are NOT charging their kids any rent or board. You love them so much that the thought just doesn’t cross your mind… I am not doubting your love for your children, but this could be giving your offspring a false sense of entitlement and teaching them nothing about how to handle regular financial commitments, once they are earning.
Why You Should Charge
In my humble opinion, as soon as you are earning, then you should be contributing; end of story. I am not suggesting for one minute you prize 50% of your Beloved Child’s first pay cheque as soon as he gets it, but I am suggesting that they contribute to the household that they live in. You know… the one that you pay for. That house that you worked all your life for….. You work hard to pay all your financial commitments… Once you have other grown ups living in your abode, doing the same, then give me one good reason why they shouldn’t be paying to be there. Don’t they have their own room? A comfy bed, hot running water, heating and cooling, free access to the fridge and freezer, washing and ironing done…? Need I go on? Mothers often stomp around saying “you treat this place like a hotel”... And yet they don’t want to charge… It’s interesting isn’t it? It Happened To Me. I Learnt From Paying Rent
Can you tell I have no children? I don’t, but is that really relevant…? Where my opinion stems from is my very own memories as a teenager; as the child paying the rent. I worked and still lived at home paying rent. My Father put the board/rent up so much that I was forced to move out, as I could no longer afford to live there. I distinctly remember my Father saying to me; “If you find somewhere else, as cheap as this to live – tell us, and we will all come and live there”…. Whilst I never saw eye to eye with my Father, he did have a point. He also stuck to his word and continually upped the rent. I ended up with various jobs including working at a night club 3 nights a week, I served bar meals at the local pub on a Saturday lunchtime and I became a (very successful) Avon Lady in the spare time I had left.
What Did It Teach Me?
What all this taught me was that, sometimes you have to think on your feet. That there is always options when you think there are none. That if you put your mind to it, you can change your financial future (if you are prepared to put the work in)…. But the main thing that it taught me was that even when things looked pretty bleak, and when all my numbers didn’t add up, I had to make a plan, realise what I had to earn, and then set about earning it….. I couldn’t afford to move out of home, and I certainly couldn’t afford to stay there, and so I made a plan. I did my research, bought my first home (a studio apartment near the Parents) and lived off my tips for a good few years. I even kept the Avon money separate - as that was my holiday money (I went to Tenerife for 2 weeks). The Future
So! If you want to get your children thinking about their financial future, understanding the necessity to pay their bills on time and understand how much they have coming in, versus how much they have going out, then do them a favour and ask them to contribute to the upkeep of the household they enjoy living in. Some Parents even put the cash aside and give it the Kids when they eventually do leave; a great way to save for your child (just don’t tell them).
It Eases Your Burden Too
I also see so many Parents struggling to make ends meet… They struggle to pay the bills and keep a roof over everyone’s head whilst the majority of the household live rent free and don’t pay for their food…. Charging (or contributing; such a nicer word), is a “win win” for everyone. You should NOT feel guilty about it; far from it. Try it and find out.
For help with your day to day finances, contact me at Spending Made Easy… 0404 468 525. Email is firstname.lastname@example.org, website is www.SpendingMadeEasy.com.au. The testimonials speak for themselves.
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