Know anyone who makes $260 a year on the side without doing anything?
Australian toddlers are - they're earning about $5 a week on average in pocket money each week.
A survey by money comparison site Finder.com.au has found that the practice of parents giving out pocket money is thriving, with mums and dads on average handing out more than $7000 to their kids throughout their childhoods.
Kids aged two and under receive an average of $5 a week, while their older teenage siblings get up to $15.
But while two-thirds of families dole out pocket money to their kids, only a third of recipients do anything to earn it.
With the majority of kids sponging off their parents for free, experts say it's a missed opportunity to teach them about work ethics and money management.
"Pocket money is a terrific way to teach kids how to value money but it's almost pointless without having included conditions like doing chores," said Finder money expert Michelle Hutchinson.
Sydney mum Jackie Nevill, who gives her five and six year olds $2 a week for basic chores, agrees.
"(Pocket money) is a good incentive so they don't get too spoilt and think they can ask for money anytime they'd like.
"It puts the onus on them. If they really want something, they can work for it."
However, incentivising has also turned her canny kids onto exploiting the system.
"They're starting to get into the mindset where they think well, why should I clean up my room if you're not going to give me money for it?"
She doesn't believe in pocket money given unconditionally.
"I don't really see what that teaches. It gives them a message that they're entitled to money for doing nothing, which is not how the world works."
The survey found that the older the kids got, the more they cost their parents, with 17 year olds receiving almost $800 in pocket money a year.
Younger parents are also more likely to splash cash on their offspring, with more than half of Gen Y parents playing banker.
NSW children were the most spoilt, with only 15 per cent of them asked to do chores compared to more than half of Queensland kids who worked for their cash.
Aussie kids and pocket money
- Average pocket money per week is $9.30, or $7016 throughout childhood
- Two year olds receive up to $260 per year
- 17 year olds get $800 per year
- Pocket money rises 7.6% a year vs savings account interest rates which rise 3% a year.
This article was originally published on Essential Baby on 31 August 2015. This article represents the views of the author only and does not necessarily reflect the views of AMP.
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