We were recently asked to review the website www.allowancemanager.com. Allowance Manager is a free tool for parents to manage a child’s allowance online. It is designed to allow parents to reward good behavior, discourage misbehavior, track chores, and enter miscellaneous allowance entries that are otherwise difficult to remember.
After reading about Allowance Manager, reviewing their website, and trying the tool out with my kids for a bit, I can share a few impressions:
Its a simple, user-friendly system that could be extremely helpful for both parents and their children.
Parents are able to keep a detailed list of when allowance was given, why it was given, how much was given and if necessary they are able to add or subtract to allowance on any given week to reward for positive behavior, pay for “extra jobs”, subtract for misbehavior, deduct as a consequence of missed chores, etc.. Both the kids and the adult have access to the record of events, but only the adult is able to submit or edit entries. No need to remember who purchased an extra school lunch in a week, downloaded a new tunes via your iTunes account, earned a little extra for raking leaves, etc.. You can enter things as they happen (both debits and credits) and the balance owed is tracked for you.
Parents can receive a weekly update of activity, prompting them to pay the allowance owed to a child. This email reminder is a huge benefit in my mind as one complaint I’ve heard about staying on top of any allowance system (or the issue with a lack of system) is that the parents forget to pay.
With how busy we all are these days, Allowance Manager is a great tool that can help us manage allowance so we don’t have to, which allows us more time to spend on those things that really matter.
Opportunites for the makers of Allowance Manager to enhance their offering:
Give options for frequency of paying the allowance. For example, for my teenage daughter, I’d rather pay monthly, but this sytem will only track and prompt me for a weekly payment.
Offer more choices for what types of things (and what specific things) children would get debits and credits for.
Allow the parent to give more control to the children if they are deemed old enough. For example, I would like my child to be able to go in and enter a debit himself if he bought an extra lunch on a certain day. (In our household, we provide all the groceries, and spring for one school lunch a week for each child. They are responsible for packing their lunches 4 days a week, but can opt to purchase an additional school lunch should they choose, but they pay us back or have that amount deducted from their allowance).
Have more guidance or ideas on the site about things to think about when it comes to allowance. I sought out other articles, ideas, etc. regarding age appropriate amounts to pay, when to start, what to have the children responsible for paying once they earn an allowance, what, if any, expectations to discuss with the child around the ideas of spending, saving and giving, of their money. What, if anything, to tie the allowance to (do they have to do anything to “earn” it), etc.. I certainly have my thoughts, and have appreciated reading and hearing about others’ methods, but some advice or guidance right on this site would be helpful.
There’s a chore chart you can download from the site, but its a PDF. I would love an editable version so our family modify, personalize and use it on the computer.
I’d love to see the website have some tools for kids to learn money management skills. Receiving an allowance is a start, and certainly opens up the family to some good conversation opportunities about values and money, but again, I’d love to see the site offer some tools as well.
Overall, for the price (free!), I think this is a simple tool that can save a family time and stress around the topic of allowance. At Simply Placed, we love to help people find organized systems and establish productive habits to make their live easier. Allowance Manager may just be a tool that can help some parents do just that. If enhancements to the system or website are made by the Powers that Be at allowancemanager.com, that’s a bonus!
What are your thoughts or systems with regards to allowance? What systems have you found helpful, or do you implement to help you manage the process? We’d love to hear from you.
Disclosure: This is sponsored content and we have been given a nominal gift card in recognition of our time to do this post. That being said, we do not blog about anything we do not believe in and Allowance Manager did not edit our post or direct our content in any way.