UK kids say they're being short-changed by the Bank of Mum & Dad

New research reveals that schoolkids in the UK say they should be paid double the amount they currently receive in weekly pocket money - an average of around GBP28 a month.

Basic household chores like washing up and putting away the groceries are woefully underpaid and should command at least a 100% rise in pocket money, according to a poll of the nation’s minors conducted by financial comparison experts money.co.uk.

The research, based on a nationwide survey of UK children (aged 6 -16) and their parents, reveals a gulf in what kids and their parents believe should be the going rate of pay for pocket money tasks. 

Parents in the UK are currently paying their children an average of GBP6.48 pocket money per week, the survey shows. And around 42 per cent of parents said they believe they pay their kids the average amount of pocket money. 

But the kids are not alright! In fact, the little Oliver Twists are demanding more. And 31 per cent of them (aged 6-16) believe they are paid less than the average amount of pocket money by their parents.

Doing the washing up ranked in 1st place as the household task that children do the most, although it is one of the lowest paying chores with an average pocket money payment of GBP1.12. 

Kids believe they should be paid more than double (GBP2.39) for washing up the dishes and are demanding more than a 100 per cent increase for putting away the groceries (up to GBP2.07) with many claiming they are short-changed by parents who, on average, pay less than a pound (90p) for that task.

Washing the car proves to be the most lucrative chore for cash-happy kids, paying an average of GBP2.51 per car wash, although this still falls short of what kids expect to be paid to get the car gleaming – a whopping GBP 4.12 … almost as much as the average cost to have your car professionally hand-washed in the UK (GBP6).

Unloading the dishwasher, cleaning the hamster’s cage and being well behaved were also listed by parents as among the most common tasks they get the kids to do for pocket money. 

Experts at money.co.uk have created a handy Pocket Money Savings Tool  money.co.uk/content/pocket-money-calculator - which shows parents if they are underpaying or overpaying in pocket money compared to the national average. 

The tool also allows parents and their children to choose which household chores they want to do and how much they should be paid per chore – giving both parents and their children a great indicator of potential earnings per week, per month or per year.

Salman Haqqi, personal finance expert at money.co.uk, says: “Two thirds of children receive pocket money for completing household tasks according to our research, but kids feel they are hugely underpaid for their domestic chores.

“In some respects, it seems that children may be asking for quite a lot - GBP4.12 to wash a car, when it costs around six pounds to get it done professionally, might seem like they’re stretching it a little.

“But in other respects, the children might have a point - the average cost of hiring a cleaner per hour in the UK is GBP12 – and a cleaner would rifle through the dish washing task in about 15 mins so would get paid around GBP4 for that job. With that perspective, getting the kids to do the washing up for GBP1.12 is cheap at around 25 per cent the going rate.

“Our Pocket Money Saving Tools helps parents and children identify which chores they can do to maximise their pocket money budget. Walking the dog, tidying the bedroom and putting away the groceries are the chores that are the least paid but are done the most often.

Regionally, children in Norwich are paid the most (GBP7.34) pocket money per week. Parents in Manchester also pay their kids above the national average (GBP7.11). But kids in Nottingham receive the least amount of pocket money per week in the whole of the UK (GBP4.65).

Parents with six or more children pay on average around GBP6 per week per child, compared to parents with only one child who pay GBP7.07 on average. Parents who have younger children pay less in pocket money (GBP4.50) compared to parents with teenagers, who receive almost double (GBP8.17) that amount. 

Haqqi adds: “Completing household tasks for pocket money is a key part of growing up and learning the value of tasks. 

“Our Pocket Money Savings Tool allows parents and children to sit down together and decide which chores they are doing and what the average amount of money they should receive for each chore is, with some household chores taking more time than others but not necessarily paying much more. 

“Our tool is a good way to agree to the pocket money payment beforehand without having any unnecessary haggling afterwards.”