Children top up pocket money with extra work

Financially stretched parents are less likely to give youngsters a weekly allowance than they were the previous year, according to NatWest Rooster Money. But children are supplementing their incomes, thanks to completing other work at home and for themselves. That takes overall weekly income up by 3p on a year earlier to £9.23, the report estimates.

The findings are based on data drawn from more than 300,000 children aged between 6 and 17 who use the NatWest Rooster Money pocket money app and prepaid card.

As such, it can only be an estimate, and will not include children who do not receive any money at all.

It suggests that a shrinking proportion of families, with children using the app, now pay pocket money as part of a regular routine.

In this data, about 30% pay regular pocket money, compared with 32% a year earlier, with youngsters most commonly receiving it on a Saturday.

A greater proportion than that are paid for chores – about 40% – although this was also down from 47% a year earlier.

Mowing the lawn, cleaning the car, cleaning the windows and gardening are the most lucrative, according to the report.

Young Entrepeneurs

Others are developing their own income, primarily through paper rounds and reselling their possessions, it found.

The BBC spoke to a group of youngsters attending a youth club who said they were developing an entrepreneurial spirit.

Scarlett aged 10 said: “I don’t really get pocket money but I have my own little business [applying glitter tattoos]. So far, out of all of the parties I’ve done this year, I’ve probably got like 100 and something pounds.”

Holly aged 9 said: “Every week I get £1.50 and I do tasks. I make my bed, I do the dishwasher, I do the dusting, I clean my bedroom, I put my clothes away. My favourite thing to spend it on is probably sweets.”

Joe aged 12 said: “I don’t get pocket money but I am good at home so if I get an accomplishment I will get £10.” Children were most likely to want to save up in order to spend on gaming and holidays, the report suggested. But Joe has something else in mind. “Probably saving up for a car. I know I’m 12 but every pocket money counts.”

Charlotte Edwards, Kevin Peachey & Star McFarlane – BBC News

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