Family Life

Should Children Be Paid To Do Household Chores?

The Pros And Cons Of Linking Money To Household Chores + Alternative Options

Having your children be involved with the upkeep of your home teaches them valuable lessons and independence. As your children get older, you might request them to do some chores around the house, other than cleaning their own room. Many parents will contemplate whether children should be rewarded or paid for the household chores. Unfortunately, there is no easy answer.

There are always pros and cons when giving an allowance to a child. Some parents will argue that children should be rewarded for their chores; others claim that helping around the house is expected of every family member. Whichever side you agree with,  the point of an allowance is to teach your children money management skills, and the point of chores is to teach life skills for when they move out. We’ll dive further into the pros and cons of linking money to chores and also top tips on alternative ways to reward your kids for doing chores.


    Why Household Chores Are Beneficial For Children

    Kids love to play! And parents want their kids to have the happiest childhoods. But the time eventually comes when it becomes necessary for kids to learn life skills. So let’s dive into a whole new kind of homework!

    There are many benefits to teaching your children to do household chores and eventually giving them individual tasks to help around the house. Here are some of the top reasons:

    1. Family Bonding: Chores can create a special time between parent and child. Young children will receive a confidence boost by helping out, and grumpy teenagers can open up over shared household chores.
    2. Teamwork: Household chores teach children about teamwork and accountability for the other family members.
    3. Life Skills: Cooking, laundry, deep cleaning are key skills for when they move out of the house and they will be grateful to possess these skills when they are on their own.
    4. Responsibility & Self-Reliance: Assigning your children regular chores that affect them personally, such as doing their own laundry or making their own lunch, will aid them in becoming self-reliant and responsible.
    5. Respect: Children will learn to respect all the things that need to be done in the house because they are part of the 'family team' responsible for it. They'll become more aware of their mess since it's their responsibility to clean it up.

    Inspiring Your Children To Partake In Household Chores

    Motivating your children to do their chores can be an exhausting task, but here are some essential tips on getting your kids to do chores with minimum objections:

    1. Have a family discussion, and instead of using vocab like chores and jobs, use motivational language, like family contributions or family roles.
    2. Create a structure for chores and set certain rules. For example, have them make the bed before they come down for breakfast, no games until the dishes are done. This way, children learn responsibilities and feel rewarded when they help out.
    3. Set time limits, this will help motivate your child and you can use it as an incentive. For example, "you can stay up another 15 minutes past bedtime if you finish the dishes in 20".
    4. Don't use chores as a punishment, because you want children to learn that a chore is an expected responsibility as a family member.

    Should Children Be Paid To Do Household Chores?

    Many parents will wrestle with the question of whether they should pay their children to do household chores. The experts will argue that linking money to chores may have an adverse effect.


    If you choose the earn-money-for-chores option, your child will see a direct connection between effort and money. And if chores are not completed, then there will be no allowance.


    Alfie Kohn, who wrote Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason, said that "the more that people are rewarded for doing something, the more likely they are to lose interest in whatever they had to do to get the reward." Various other studies also claim that children will feel more like contributing family members if they don't receive payment for doing chores.


    Should Children Be Paid To Do Household Chores?

    Many parents adopt the hybrid method. This is when children are expected to be contributing family members, but they can earn additional allowance when tackling larger chores.

    If your child is receiving an allowance, it will usually not be tied to their household chores when adopting the hybrid method. Allowing them to make a little extra for doing larger tasks could give them an entrepreneurial outlook, as they will need to negotiate how much they think they should earn for each task.


    Ways To Reward Your Child For Doing Household Chores

    There are some parents who do not want to link money to chores; but wish to reward their children as an incentive. We have listed some great alternative reward options below:

    1. Stay up past bedtime: No matter what age, every child wants to stay up later. It's a great way to motivate your kid to do a household chore!
    2. A new app every month: Kids and teens love apps, and a good reward system would be a new app download once their monthly chores are finished.
    3. Playdates: This is a fantastic option for the younger kids. Let them work towards a fun day out with a friend.
    4. Choose your dinner: For smaller tasks like doing the dishes or taking out the trash for a week, they can choose the family dinner for the next day.
    5. Extra screentime: Screentime is always an issue with children, and using chores as a point system for screentime is a good incentive for household chores.

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