1. Each child had a checking account with no overdraft protection into which we deposited $100 on the first of every month.
2. Said child was responsible for purchasing non-essential clothing and any recreation that did not include at least one other family member.
3. We continued to fund essential clothing, such as replacing clothing that no longer fit.
4. We made it clear that we would never advance money against the next month’s allowance.
5. In the event of a “bounced” check, said child would repay the merchant, pay the merchant’s fine, pay the bank’s fine, and pay a fine to us of the sum of those figures. Those monies would come off the top of the next month’s allowance.
We never had problem one with the program. Its purpose was not to simply help the kids learn how to “handle money.” It was to teach impulse-control, planning, and the valuable skill of being able to say “no” to oneself.
When he was 15, Eric asked me to advance him the money for a concert ticket. I reminded him of the rule. He told me that I should make an exception since the concert was not announced such that he could plan ahead for it. I told him the rule was the rule and that was that. He began to beg, whereupon I reminded him that his mother and I paid for recreation that included another family member.
It was a great concert.
You can follow John Rosemond on his website at www.johnrosemond.com.