(This is a guest post written by my son Fionn, sharing his thoughts on working to save up money for a big purchase)
Why I want a new scooter
I want a new scooter because my old Razor scooter Handel bars locked to the left when I crashed.
I also want a new scooter because my razor was lower to the ground and scrapes against the concrete. Park scooters are higher
off the ground and don’t scrape the concrete.
How much it cost and why I want a expensive scooter
It costs $200 I want an expensive scooter instead of a cheap one because cheap ones aren’t usually park scooters. There mostly have bigger wheels to bump over stuff. They also come with replacement parts.
Arrangement with mom and dad
The arrangement with my parents is simple I got 3 choices 1# not get one 2#Pay with my bank account 3# do work
I chose do work because I want a scooter and I want to save up for something else in the future. Working will probably help my work career too. Some of the chores you could say a few are Shoveling the snow, mowing the lawn, making my bed every day and loading the dishwasher.
How many hours
I have to do 18 and a half hours I get 10.85$ an hour.
What have I done
I have shoveled snow in our yard and wrote this article.
I think it’s a good idea I have to work for it because if they just bought it for me I wouldn’t get used to having to work for something I want. It will give me working skill if I work instead of get what I want.
I’m less likely to get fired if I know how to work then if I don’t.
The Parent’s side of the story
On Easter weekend Fionn had a crash in the skate park that ended the long and happy life of his Razr Scooter.
In discussions with Fionn after the crash, Fionn explained that for his next scooter he would like something a bit more advanced, and that would work better in the skate park, versus just riding around on the roads. A bit of investigation revealed that, in our local area, the next step up in scooter is going to cost $200.00.
Ashlea and I agreed that we didn’t want to just buy Fionn a new scooter, but wanted to give him the opportunity to think through the $200 money challenge and make his own decision on how he would pay for it. As Fionn mentions in the article we gave him three choices:
- Not buy a new scooter.
- Use money he has saved in his bank account.
- Do extra work (above and beyond his usual chores) around the house to make enough money to buy the scooter.
Fionn picked #3, and after some discussion, we decided we would pay him minimum wage ($10.85) for any labor activities and DOUBLE that amount for any creative activities he completed.
Why double for createive work? As an entrepreneur I want Fionn to learn that there are other ways to make money than having a job (though if he decides to get a job eventually that is fine too), and that using your brain and your creativity is an excellent way to make money.
The article Fionn wrote above is an example of an opportunity I gave him to do some creative work and make some extra money towards his scooter.
We have also given Fionn two main options for making money towards the scooter:
- We can assign him tasks (shoveling snow, cleaning up tree branches, vacuuming the house) which we will pay $10.85 for him to complete.
- He can come to us with ideas for tasks and negotiate his own payment to complete the task.
We are hoping, that Fionn will learn some valuable lessons from this experiment:
- that the things he has cost money and don’t just appear by magic
- he can choose to not buy things if he feels they are not worth it
- he can choose between using money in savings or working to make money
- there are different types of work he can do to make money
- that different types of work pay different amounts of money
- he can create his own work, and negotiate a price
We are also hoping, that, in the end, after making enough money to buy the scooter, Fionn will have an increased appreciation for the scooter, and for all of the other things he receives in his life, whether he purchases them, receives them as gifts, or we buy them for him.