We’ve finally come up with a way for our pre-teen to consistently earn extra cash around the house for his expenses while simultaneously taking some of the pressure off us to make every single event a lesson in personal finance.
We’ve gone from automatically opening our wallets to pay for movies, skating, middle school sporting events and dances (yes, school dances), and sweet treats to making the phrase “It’s easier to spend someone else’s money” finally have some meaning.
We know there are a few online survey sites that he can work with (under adult supervision) but many that allow teens have a minimum age requirement of 13.
So, in the meantime, he has to make withdrawals from the Bank of Parents. Here you’ll find our list of systems that allow our preteens to earn a bit of pocket change and learn some age-appropriate responsibility.
31 Ways for Preteens to Earn Extra Cash Around The House
We created a list of common household tasks our son can do to earn money around the house. Now, If there are events that are by their very nature a bit pricey we will contribute if (as parents) we deem it to be worth everyone’s money.
He does not get paid for basic tasks that are expected as a contributing member of the household. He does not earn extra cash:
- Clean his own room
- Clean his own bathroom
- Sweep the front and back porch
- Mow the yard as needed (Don’t worry – this is supervised)
- Feed the dog
- Empty trash cans
- Take the trash out to the curb on trash day
He cannot begin to earn money for the day until his basic tasks are complete.
Rate of Pay:
Pay is task-based, not time-based. Adjusting for inflation, your kids will most likely want $5 for each task. DON’T OVERPAY. You’ll set them up for disappointment later in life when they get a real job. (Or, you could overpay them, then take taxes and insurance out and hand them back a dollar–ha!)
Here are the ways a pre-teen can earn extra money around the house:
Some tasks should be supervised depending on the exact age and level of maturity of the pre-teen.
- Pull weeds from the rock garden using a weeding tool
- Wiping baseboards using a dust cloth (paid by the room)
- Washing indoor trashcans using a cleanser and water (paid by the trashcan)
- Cleaning the trash out of each car
- Vacuuming the carpet in each car
- Wash the dog
- Dusting/polishing tables, consoles, or shelves
- Wipe all door handles with a rag and disinfectant cleaner (I like Simple Green for everything except mirrors)
- Wipe all light switches with a rag and cleaner
- Dust the window seals in each room (paid by the room)
- Clean the toaster over, panini press, and microwave
- Match/organize items in the storage container cabinet
- Sharpen pencils in my home office
- Water all houseplants (as needed)
- Clean the master bathroom sinks with a cleanser
- Clean the guest bathroom sink with a cleanser
- Clean the toilet bowl in the master bathroom
- Clean the toilet bowl in the guest bathroom
- Clean the mirrors in the master bathroom
- Clean the mirror in the guest bathroom
- Clean the ceiling fans with a ceiling fan duster
- Dust all televisions entertainment center units
- Clean/dust the front door (both sides)
- Wipe all remote controls with a disinfectant cloth
- Re-fill all soap dispensers (kitchen and bathrooms)
- Wipe all laptops and phones with a disinfectant cloth
- Wipe down pantry cabinets to remove any dust, dirt, or spills
- Shred all papers in our shredder pile
- Wipe down outside and top of washer and dryer
What household tasks does your preteen do to earn extra cash? I’m excited about this gigantic list and am going to have my kids do some work to earn money this weekend, how about you?