If you get some serious change from your parents every day/week/month, you’re one of the lucky ones. Your allowance is a gift your folks have decided to bestow on you, just for the privilege of being their child.
An allowance is (pretty much) a “life fund.” You might be getting up to $100 (or more) a week to feed yourself, buy phone credit, and travel to and from school and lessons.
But your extra change can also be saved, flipped and turned into something that can make you more money, help you pay for university/school, or your First Big Purchase.
Start saving for school … or collateral for your first loan for tuition
Even if you’ve got GATE as an option, you’re still going to need some extra money to finance your uni lifestyle. You’re also going to need money for books, stationery, group project expenses — and, of course, for an old-fashioned good time when you’re ready to unwind.
If you need a loan, you’re going to need to have some collateral. Why not try to get a jump on your savings goals? It’ll certainly help your parents when it’s time for them to help support you during your undergrad years.
Use it to start your first business
If you’re more entrepreneurial, then maybe you’ve already started your own small business. You might be having big bake sales at school. Or maybe you’ve been making jewellery that all your classmates are rocking whenever they’re out of uniform.
Congrats — you’ve got a small business. Your allowance can cover your overhead: ingredients for your cakes, materials for your bracelets or t-shirts for your original designs. Oh, and you’re also going to need to spread the word about your services, so set aside some cash to make flyers, business cards — anything that will get the word out.
Start saving for your driving lessons (a lot of jobs now want people who can at least drive/operate a light motor vehicle)
Driving classes aren’t free. If you want to get that coveted driver’s permit, you’re going to need to fork out cash for each lesson, your learner’s permit, your tests, and maybe your insurance after you’ve actually passed.
This way, as soon as you hit 17, you’ll be ready to stand up in the Licensing Office all day. At least you can feel proud that you’re doing it all on your own dime.
Start saving for your first car
Buying a car is expensive. There’s insurance, loan payments, taxes, a budget for car parts, maintenance — oh yeah, and gas. You’ll want to have a small nest egg to contribute to your first big purchase.
Your allowance is non-taxable income that you can use to start building your “First Car Fund.” It will also show your parents how serious you are about creating and sticking to your goals. Hey, they may even decide to feel sorry for you and help you out. The brownie points you’ll score for at least making an attempt can go a long way.