Skip to main content

Financial Security

Parents Give Children Realistic Expectations on the Cost of Chores

Parents Teaching Kids that Money Needs to Be Earned Are Now Armed with COUNTRY Financial Security Index Findings and New Chores App Tool

Sept. 21, 2016

The value of a dollar can be a hard concept for children to grasp. When it comes to finances, kids tend to think big and beyond reality.  However, the real world is not a fantasy full of ponies and monster trucks.  

The latest COUNTRY Financial Security Index examined Americans’ current sentiments on the topic of teaching their children about finances through the use of chores and allowance. It revealed 68 percent of Americans believe children should receive an allowance for completing chores. Furthermore, of the people who are currently providing kids with an allowance, more than half (54 percent) did so to teach their children money needs to be earned. A further 22 percent wanted to teach their kids the value of money, while only 12 percent said it was to teach them financial independence.  

Based on responses, COUNTRY Financial® has identified the average rate of payment for chores in America today, which parents can use in their negotiations with kids on the value of common household chores. 

“Now more than ever, American parents are feeling the pressure of achieving a financially secure future, not just for themselves, but also for their children,” said Troy Frerichs, director of wealth management at COUNTRY Financial. “This is why COUNTRY Financial is working to equip parents with helpful tools to educate their kids on being financially responsible.”

Parents and Family Play Key Role in Educating Youth 

When it comes to learning about finances:

  • Nearly half of all respondents (46 percent) reported learning on their own, with 39 percent saying they learned from their parents and family members. 
  • The number who learned from their parents grew to 48 percent for Millennials, showing a shift toward a greater parental responsibility for their children’s financial education in the new generation.  

A majority of Americans said children should begin receiving money for chores completed, allowance or “free” financial support at a young age. Nearly 40 percent of parents said between 8-10 years old is the right age, and one-third said it should start between the ages of 5 and 7.

To help parents teach their kids about the value of money, as it relates to chores, COUNTRY Financial has developed the ChorePal app. The new app is a modern way for families to work together to save for personal and family goals through daily household chores. 

“COUNTRY Financial is providing parents with a proactive tool to explain this concept, which can be a difficult one to grasp, in an easier way for their kids to understand,” said Frerichs. “It can help prompt great family conversations about the value of hard work, savings and investment, while helping introduce the topic in a simple and fun way.”  

Along with allowing you to create and assign chores to your kids, ChorePal lets you reward them with points or money toward real goals. They can be rewarded with a night at the movies, extra screen time, the latest gaming system or any other reward a parent or child can imagine.

Looking Beyond Chores: How Parents Reward Their Children

Rewarding children for good deeds and positive performance were also reported:

  • More than 60 percent of parents said they bought their child a gift to reward them for good behavior.
    • Women were more likely to reward a child for good behavior (64 percent) than men. (58 percent)
  • Forty-seven percent of Americans said they gave their child money for good grades.
    • Women were also more likely to give a financial reward for good grades (50 percent), compared to 43 percent of men. 

The generational differences in what people rewarded their children for were also worth noting:

  • Millennials (ages 18-35) were more likely to reward for good behavior (66 percent) compared to 59 percent in Gen. X (ages 36-51) and 61 percent in Baby Boomers (ages 52-70)
  • Baby Boomers were more likely to reward for good grades (56 percent, versus 47 percent for Gen. X and 41 percent for Millennials). This number rose to 100 percent in the Silent Generation (ages 71-88), with every respondent in this age group reporting having given a child a financial reward for good grades.

Interestingly, 12 percent of parents who are married also revealed they had bought a child a gift out of guilt, with this number rising to 19 percent for respondents who are single. 

The COUNTRY Financial ChorePal app is available for download at www.GetChorePal.com. For more information, visit www.CountryFinancial.com and join the conversation online with #LearnToEarn.

About The COUNTRY Financial Security Index® 

Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has measured Americans' sentiments of their personal financial security. The Index also delves deeper into individual personal finance topics to better inform Americans about the issues impacting their finances. Survey data, videos and analysis are available at www.countryfinancialsecurityblog.com and on Twitter at @helloCOUNTRY

The COUNTRY Financial Security Index was created by COUNTRY Financial. This survey was conducted by EMC Research, Inc., an independent research firm, commissioned by COUNTRY Financial. Surveys were conducted using a national online research panel designed to be representative of the general population and includes responses from 1,000 U.S. adults over the age of 18 for national surveys with additional interviews completed in Georgia, Illinois, and Oregon to bring the total in each of those states to 500 completed surveys.