Allowance tips: what Parenthackers are doing

Amazon: Money Savvy PigThe comments on my post detailing my family's allowance strategy were FULL of practical advice and fantastic suggestions. (As usual. This is such a smart community.) Thank you to all who joined in…it's so helpful to hear about how things work in other families.

A few highlights:

Joe: "We keep track of kids' money with a manual check register."

Debbie and LaurieM use the Money Savvy Pig piggy bank to physically separate money into different categories.

3BoysMom: "We track our kids' allowance on an Excel spreadsheet. Each child has their own tab. It keeps a running total with columns for earned, spent, available spending money and savings and charity money. The Earnings calculate automatically each week. When they actually buy something, I deduct it."

Jess is looking into the Money Trail app for Android. (Let us know how it goes, Jess!)

Jessica's best-laid plans are complicated by the grandparents, who slip the kids money! 

Joanna: "When I was a kid I didn't get allowance. My money came from holiday and birthday gifts plus household chores occasionally. Anything that I wanted that was considered 'big ticket' (ice skates when I was 7, a car when I turned 15), my parents split the cost of with a top end limit and I could borrow my half with minimal interest against future 'earnings'. I plan to do the same with my kids, who are still babies. Having to come up with 1/2 of everything I wanted went a long way toward my money education."

Lori uses EEBA (Easy Envelope Budget Aid), an app for Android and the mobile Web.

I encourage you to read through the full post and comments to get the full benefit of everyone's wisdom. The conversation continues!

More: Allowance hacks


  1. Peter Hesse says

    The allowance-tracking app we use is called KidsBank from Bunting Software ( It’s a pretty nice app, allows you to set up jobs with specific amounts they result in, regular periodic deposits, and importantly, encourages money to be saved and spent by automatically splitting deposits. Tracks multiple kids too. There’s also a free ad-supported version as well.

  2. Jess says

    Just wanted to report back that the Money Trail app is working pretty well. It’s just a link to their web site (so not actually an app), but it works pretty well on the go. I particularly like the linked account setup, and that my daughter can have her own account with her own password, etc.

    I’ve also decided to enforce the idea that my daughter should be using her allowance to buy her own treats. That will help me keep within my own budget. We did that at a gift shop yesterday. She bought what she wanted, stayed within the amount that she had, and didn’t argue (too much) that I should buy her the cute little stuffed dogs.

  3. says

    My husband works a “regular” job that pays the bills. I get paid for my non-regular job every couple of weeks and it is our convention/fun money. When this happens, I slip $5 into both kids piggy banks. My 5 year old knows that if she keeps her room clean, does her homework (yes, she has homework), does the two or three chores she’s asked to do, and stays out of trouble at school, she’ll get the $5 every two weeks. Our two year old would like to eat the money.

    Most of the time, 5-yr-old wants to buy for other people and not herself, so we aren’t really keeping track of the spending…yet.

  4. Blair says

    Our kids got fed up with asking us for money and inspired us to seek out an app to handle keeping track of their allowances. We decided to use Allowance Manager ( It’s free, so the price is right, and it’s flexible enough to handle our quirky system. What is great about it is its ability to credit a weekly allowance and then let us make entries at any time and from wherever we are so that we all simply agree upon how much money each of us has.