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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:44 am 
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Location: Herts
I've been reading the thread about teen bank accounts with interest. I think it's a really good idea & intend to sort one out for my DD aged 13.

I noticed some people put a "monthly allowance" in which is what I'd like to do. But I can't decide how much (or rather, what it should cover). At the moment, my DD gets £6 a week. Out of this she tops up her mobile, buys a few clothes / make up / hair stuff etc & sweets & drinks if she goes out, and has lunch in the school canteen once a week. I will pay for her to go to the cinema (only about 2 or 3 times in the last year!) & occasionally we go shopping together. At the moment I think it is cheaper for me to fund her as she goes, but of course, this will change as her social life moves from parties / sleepovers to paid for events.

Every family of course has their own budget & I don't mean to be nosey about the specific about of cash you dole out! Just wondered if anyone has already worked out a good formula for calculting how much a teen "needs"?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:30 am 
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We went through reasonable expenditure over a year based on current lifestyle & then divided it by 12 so DD had to learn to budget but had this original to use as a basis.
Good idea to both keep a copy of the original list of what was agreed in case of queries over what was supposed to be covered.

So much depends on the 'child' & how the family operates re things like buying presents for friends/family, socialising, mobile phone bills ....
Some families differentiate between essential expenditure & optionals - so parents buy school uniform, books, equipment etc - while others include an allowance for this. I dont know what happens if the child doesn't then have the funds when they need new school shoes, blazer etc

School lunches are a bit if a tricky area as I have concerns about teenagers eating properly at lunch time. If the normal arrangement is for DCs to have school lunches then I believe this should be totally separate from other money so there is no encouragement to buy make-up, CDs... instead of lunch.
Of course its impossible to ensure they actually but the school dinner! - except where they have a debit card system/parents can be billed termly etc.

My feeling is that it is better to start on a reasonable but 'low income' which can be increased as the child gets older & their needs develop. Also would start with limited areas of responsibilty & increase these with maturity (eg. winter coats, shoes, school kit only once past GCSE stage maybe?)

Other factor is who pays for equipment for hobbies/ sports. Can be a total minefield wher DCs are sporty/ musical.
And school trips - optional v. curriculum?

Maybe we should start a 'check list' of all the items to be considered :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:40 am 
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Do you know, Tense, it's exactly what I was thinking after reading the banking thread.

Currently dd (rising 13) gets £5 a week pocket money to spend how she chooses. Her school dinners/clothes/mobile is paid for by us.

We have been looking into the bank account/visa card thing and are erring on the side of a combination of three things - viz: 1) half her pocket money to be paid into a bank account so she has to make an effort to go into town and draw it out, we are hoping she won't be as frivalous with it (there's a shop just round the corner from us, which is a little too convenient for drinks, chocolate bars and magazines!) 2) the other half of her pocket money paid in cash so she has money to hand if needed (sometimes goes to a milk bar straight from school with friends and no chance to visit her bank first) and 3) a prepaid Visa (or Mastercard) with say, £30 a month allowance for clothes with the stipulation it will be monitored VERY closely and if we find she is buying 'rubbish' we will have a re-think.

We will continue to fund her mobile (it's on contract) and buy school uniform/dinners. But essentially we would like her to take control of her budget (she already moans how expensive make-up is - mascara and face cleanser/moisturiser she means :shock: ) and get an appreciation of saving up for those more expensive items she really wants. We're hoping to steer her away from (see post below for missing words :shock: )credit cards when she's older, we don't have them ourselves but know it's prevalent, but would rather she learnt good old fashioned ways of spending money - especially given the econonomic climate, who knows what it will be like in 5 years time!

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Last edited by Snowdrops on Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:44 am 
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That's really strange, in my post above I refere to steering DD away from something, which the board won't allow to be viewed, since when were c.r.e.d.i.t cards considered 'naughty'? :lol: :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:26 pm 
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The cosmetics/toiletries issue is tricky too - especially for girls who have reached puberty.
Some items are clearly luxuries but there are other items which I would want them to use that they might not give priority to (in the case of young teenage boys :)but also skin care can be expensive & is important.
I'd also prefer them not to use cheap hair colouring/ have friends cutting their hair etc so is some flexibility with paying for these things.

Suspect it depends very much on the DCs. Mine tend not to be extravagent with typical 'teenage' expenditure so I am quite supportive - if I thought they were being wasteful I might have a different attitude.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 1:13 pm 
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Hi
3 of our DC have bank accounts. We pay them £45 per calendar month into their accounts. They can earn an extra £5 if their rooms are tidy, they get this about 50% of the time :!:

From this they have to fund: school lunches, phone top ups, make up, most clothes, casual shoes, play station games, social lives, friend's birthday presents, but not family. That's all I can think of. We fund sports subs, matches, entry fees etc, school uniform (unless they lose kit - they have to replace it).

It has worked really well for us, we shell out far less than we used to. The children are far more responsible and make far better choices about what they really want. I used to hate shopping and being pestered from start to finish for rubbish. They still do buy rubbish occasionally, but that's their choice and they have to go without something else.

BTW - mine are good eaters and always buy an good lunch, I have no worries about them saving money by not eating. They do buy far less sweets now though.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 8:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 2:02 pm
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Location: Herts
Wow, thanks everyone, lots to think about there. I hadn't even considered things like presents or haircuts! I'll have to sit down with my DD & try & work a budget out. She wants to start saving up towards her contribution to a school trip (of the very non essential type we can't easily justify fundng at the moment) so hopefully an increased allowance / bank account will help with this. Alternatively Primark's profits might soar!


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