teen jobs/teen spending money

teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby JulieB » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:46 am

So our oldest is 16 now. He turned 16 in December. He has a drivers license and we bought a "3rd family car" for him to drive. We have been paying for gas and of course the insurance on the car. We also give him spending money when he goes out with friends .. fast food, movies, etc. We have given him spending money and pay for his cell phone because he helps with babysitting every now and then but that is becoming less and less now that he can drive and since we have another teen son (almost 14) who can babysit.

He plays on the high school soccer team so we haven't forced the job issue because he practices after school. Soccer ends this week so we are pushing him to go find a job. He has applied at 3 places but seems to lack the motivation to follow up, get more applications in, etc. Its probably going to come down to us not gtiving him anything extra to get him truly motivated.

Those with older teens, how have you handled paying for gas, spending money, etc?
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby cathie » Sun Mar 16, 2014 2:26 pm

Julie, our teen is younger (14 1/2) so not driving yet but she makes a lot of $ babysitting. She has to pay 1/2 of the cost of replacing anything she loses (clothes, sports equipment, calculator!) and she had to pay 1/2 of her trip to Europe last year ($500). Next year when she is in high school we're planning to follow my SIL's model where she'll get a monthly allowance for clothes etc. and then if she wants extra things she'll have to pay for then herself. She won't need a car here because we're walkable/transit-able but I definitely would expect her to pay for gas if she had her own. I don't know how much insurance is, we'd probably pay but we'd discuss it with her and come up with whatever seems fair (she might need to pay a portion?) Were already clear with her on what we're willing to pay for vs. what is her responsibility. She is not in high school yet though so I don't know if she'll have trouble with the workload plus babysitting. It's easy right now because she has SO much available cash.

I do think it's harder for boys. DS1 is 11 and having a tough time finding things to do that can make him money. He is only responsible for paying 1/2 the cost of replacing things at this point but he's pretty scattered so he is always needing money, lol. The only thing we do so far is pay him for mowing the lawn and other yard work. He offered to do neighbors but they all use landscapers and in the winter snowblowers rather than paying for kids to shovel. He doesn't really babysit his brother yet either.

IMHO the more they can learn about budgeting etc. before they leave home the better. My parents didn't do much with us (they paid for everything & gave us spending money) and I wish they had.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby wanda » Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:06 pm

The kids were given a reasonable amount of money for going out, but there were limitations. Gas was generally a tank every other week (we live in a small town) - run out, you can park it. Because of sports and such, the kids knew that as long as they upheld their end of the deal (behavior & grades) we were willing to pay their way. Brian, of course, didn't comply. As a result, he ended up working and paying his own way. He did stay on our insurance plan, but that was it.

I would decide on a dollar amount and that's it. If he wants more, there is his incentive to seriously look for work.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Linda » Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:45 am

we're rural so getting a job required driving. Simon didn't get his driver's license until after he graduated high school (he was 18y7m) - he was about a week into his first job and his new boss said he needed a license so he finally took the test and got it. [he worked at the same location as DH and they carpooled initially]

We lent him a truck at first - it was still OURS but he could use it as needed. We paid the initial insurance but after that he had to pay the difference between insurance with him and insurance without him. He pays gas and maintenance and repairs. He bought his own truck that Autumn with cash. He's currently driving ours again as he's been saving up for an new engine ($2500) - it'll get fixed next week, he's paying the deposit tomorrow and once the parts come in...

Cathleen will be eligible for her learners in just over a year (May 2015). I suspect she'll want to get it right away and test for her license the following May (mandatory 12m on learners for under 18s). She'll be able to borrow our truck also but she'll need to get a job for gas and insurance.

Simon wasn't much for going out so entertainment money really wasn't a factor there. Cathleen's much more social so that may become an issue.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Esther » Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:44 am

We're probably a bit different than the norm, in that we really did not want our boys working while they were in school. (and honestly, there is no way my 10th grader could work given his current band and french academics schedule... he literally has something, sometimes 2 things, after school EVERY SINGLE DAY... and it's not even marching band season.. it's concert season, and he's competing in a state french competition at the end of this month, plus honor society, etc etc). Also, we are not pushing the driving thing. Danny will turn 16 in 2 mos and we have not seen the need yet for him to get his permit, maybe this summer after he turns 16. And next year will be even worse, he's taking 4 AP classes on top of his crazy something every day of the week schedule...

The older two boys did not get jobs until after high school. Actually Matt didn't get his first job until after his first year of college, and due to our move last summer, there was no way Ryan could get a job when we didn't move until the end of June and then college/band camp started mid August. Ryan JUST applied for a few jobs while he was home over spring break, and hopefully will get more job applications in over Easter, but you know what, it's a lot harder for teens to find jobs nowadays!! Matt really didn't have any luck with applications until he was a college student.

We now have 4 cars under our names, my car, DH's car, my old car - which Matt has up in WV, he didn't get the use of it until this past year when he was a junior, b/c Ryan used it when he was a senior in HS. Now my brother just gave us his old car for Ryan and Danny to use. I don't see us letting Ryan take it to college until Danny is done needing it his last 2 years of high school.

We pay for the insurance for all of them, and right now, we give Matt a set amount of $ for rent, expenses - gas, food, utilities, every month.

With Ryan at college, we don't give him any spending money since we are paying his room/board and tuition. He's living on campus this year, but next year is moving off, so we'll do the same with him, give him a set amount. He is our saver and has saved money over the years from birthdays and christmas gifts, graduation, etc, and he really doesn't like to spend money.

Danny is 15, so he gets a set allowance right now for doing chores around the house and will start cutting the grass again soon.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby erin » Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:36 am

Vincent is too busy to work, but even if he could squeeze it in, locally it is next to impossible to find a job if you're under 18. Even then it's really hard so instead I give him a set amount and he budgets from that and I make him do extra around the house like babysitting and cleaning.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Tammy » Thu Mar 20, 2014 10:57 am

I'm torn on this issue. I want to foster a sense of responsibility in Alec. He's already pretty independent, though, and has no problem earning anything. During our last big snowstorm, he went around our neighborhood, helping older neighbors shovel out and earned an impressive little wad of cash in just a little over an hour. He didn't ask for the money, nor did I tell him to offer his services. I was really proud of him for that. (Mind you, this same kid needs a fire lit underneath him to clean his own room.)

While he has a lot in terms of material objects (typical only child?), he rarely asks for anything, so when he does, I tend to say yes pretty often. I don't pay for grades, but I do reward him for exceptional effort -- and sometimes just because. I have also given him a credit card for certain things, just because it's easier than handing out cash constantly. But he doesn't abuse it at all, always asks before he uses it.

I know that he is going to have the rest of his life to work, so I want him to be able to enjoy as much of his childhood, now teen years, as he can. He carries a pretty heavy load at school, and I'm not sure I want him working a regular job during the school year. He doesn't have to go to movies, etc. with friends on weeks he has a lot of studying to do, but he would have to report to work if he had a part-time job.

All that said, he isn't driving yet. That could possibly be a bit of a game changer. I don't think I will love the idea of a job during the school year even when he is driving, but perhaps it is something that we will allow or even expect over the summers then.

On a side note, I love to see resourceful kids who make money doing things they enjoy. Alec has a friend (one year older) who earns about $2K a month with his YouTube channel. And he puts it ALL into his college savings. I find that amazing.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby JulieB » Thu Mar 20, 2014 4:57 pm

Interesting to read the different perspectives! I babysat while I was a younger teen and then got a job at a store at the mall when I was 17 .. my parents gave me a lot .. car, gas, an generous allowance but it just seemed like something you did .. get a job. Plus I had an expensive clothes habit .. ha! DH's family wasn't able to be as generous so he started working part time jobs when he was 15 as a need for gas and extras he wanted.

Brooks is certainly not wanting for anything .. the kid has been given an Iphone5, a Mac laptop, ipad, flat screen TV, all the gaming systems, a newish car, very nice clothes and shoes, etc. So I guess at 16.5 we feel like he needs to start learning the vaule of a dollar and a little taste of the workforce. He is a wonderfully polite, responsible, respectful and all around good kid. Our biggest deal for him wanting a part time job is for him to have something to do in the summer ... what do older teens do in the summer if they aren't working?? In his early teens, he hung out with friends, played video games, etc but an older teen doing that just seems lazy and unproductive? Working 15-20 hours a week in the summer would still give him PLENTY of time to hang with friends.

During the school year when soccer is in season, he wouldn't be able to work .. at least not during the school week. But when it is not soccer season, he could handle 1-2 after school shifts and a weekend shft. Our high school is on block scheduling so he has A/B days .. not all the same classes each day so he can plan ahead for assignments/homework.

He put in 3 applications last week and already has an interview tomorrow after school and talked to another place on the phone that he applied at that sounded promising ... so teens without prior job experience do get shots at jobs around here!
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Esther » Thu Mar 20, 2014 8:32 pm

That is good news Julie! BTW after I posted on this thread, Ryan texted me and said he got contacted by Kroger's... So hopefully he can get an interview set up when he's home over Easter break for a summer job...
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby JulieB » Fri Mar 21, 2014 8:04 pm

Well that was shockingly easy .. got hired during his interview. So happy to see that teens can get hired for good jobs in our area. He got hired to work at a national chain pool supply store that is 3 mintues from our hosue. Will be testing pool water, helping customers in the store, stocking, etc. And because the store closes at 7PM during the week days ... its NBD to have a job during the school week. Will mostly be working on weekends. SO proud of him!
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby wanda » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:29 pm

Wonderful on the jobs for both boys Esther and Julie!

For the life of me, I can't remember exactly what the kids were doing during the summer but they definitely weren't sitting around all the time. Brian didn't follow rules and was working probably by 11th grade though. Courtney was involved with community theatre and helped with their workshops and such in addition to attending their camp.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Esther » Sat Mar 22, 2014 7:47 am

WTG Brooks! Sounds like a perfect job :)
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Maelyn » Sat Mar 22, 2014 2:43 pm

Late to the party here... but I'm with Esther on this one. Cam wants to get a job to have more spending money - he has an allowance that is the current inflation rate equivalent of what I had at his age. I'm trying to talk him out of it. He already has choir, college, and acting after school. He is a big help around the house with both his younger brothers and will be doing a LOT of schlepping of his brothers to school and back as well as choir rehearsals when he has his full license so I'd like him to focus on education and doing those things that will (hopefully) turn into scholarships etc.

We will be buying a 3rd family car but it will not be "his". It is more for our convenience than for him.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby Linda » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:56 am

Congratulations Brooks!

Summers? Simon read books, played computer games, worked in the yard, helped with his sisters, did summer homework, did a week at Boy Scout camp, rode his bike, built Lego, cooked, cleaned....unlike Cathleen, he was rarely bored in the summer. Cathleen -she reads books, plays computer games, writes (she's an aspiring author), has sleepovers, and complains about being bored/lonely/bored/overworked/bored....
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby cathie » Wed Mar 26, 2014 12:00 pm

Julie, so glad it worked out for Brooks! I think it is great for teens to work. I've seen such a change in dd now that she babysits outside the house.

I do wonder what we are doing as a society when kids are so busy with school work & activities trying to get into college that they have no time to get jobs. I totally understand that it makes sense in individual cases because kids have so many interests, but in the big picture I wonder about what it says to our kids. Then again, I know in Europe they don't believe in having teens work (an Italian friend of mine once called it "Anglo-Saxon cruelty") so maybe it really doesn't matter. After all, they have their whole lives to work...

FWIW, my younger brother still says the most motivating thing to him academically was getting a summer job one year as a busboy. He saw for the first time what jobs were like for people with no college education and realized he better get his butt in gear. Now he's a lawyer so I'm not sure if that was a good or bad thing lol.
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby carseatmom » Wed Apr 02, 2014 10:40 pm

We pretty much forced Baylee to get a job. The kid has big plans and we are not about to pay for them! LOL! We've told our kids from the time they were pre-teens. If they want to drive, they have to pay for their insurance and gas. Baylee, going to an accelerated HS, serving on the GS board of directors for the council, on the debate team, and participating in several more GS events each month, still has a job and not only has a job, but works 20-30hrs a week at that job! There have been a few weeks were I thought she was going to loose her mind, but she made it through it and is plugging along. She has a trip to pay for! We are going back to Europe and England next year and I'm not paying for her to go this time. So she pays for her gas and insurance, and now her smart phone (I don't pay for those either) and puts the rest away for her trip. :)

Glad to hear Brooks got a job already! :)
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Re: teen jobs/teen spending money

Postby funnygirl » Thu Jun 12, 2014 4:38 pm

Both my kids just got "real" jobs starting the last week or so of school. They are both working about 30 hours per week. They don't drive yet (they havne't studied and I'm not pushing right now) although it would be nice becuase we have to cart Neya back & forth to the mall (20 min each way). Their habits got too expensive for me to support. Plus, I started babysitting when I was 12, and had my first job by the time I was starting high school. I wanted the $$ and my parents didn't give me an allowance as a teen.

I think it's good for them to work to understand the value. Makes them appreciate and learn to care for their belongings.

Neya will likely have work study for next year, and Anthony will probably continue at the pizza shop around the corner (he can ride his bike).
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