Save up for it

Ever since Halo 3 was launched, my little brother wanted me to buy him an Xbox 360. The price tag for one of those was around five hundred dollars and I couldn’t afford to get him one at the time. I told him that if he really wanted to get one, he’ll have to save for it. So far, he’s doing a good job.

Kevin is eleven years old, turning twelve this December. He’s the youngest of the boys and he gets spoiled by my mom. Every time he goes shopping with my mom, he’ll come home with a toy of some sort. I tell him not to waste money on toys because they don’t last that long. He’ll buy it one day and he’ll break or go missing by the end of the week.

I try to encourage him to save up for things but usually he’ll save up and then waste his money on toys. During the summer, he saved up fifty dollars and then he blew it on a toy Nerf Gun. When I was younger, I never had money to waste on toys like that. Heck, I barely had any toys at all. When I had money, I tried to save up as much as I could and then buy stuff that I need like shoes and clothes. I didn’t have the luxury that he has today.

He’s the youngest of us so he gets what he wants most of the time. He knows how to get what he wants. Sometimes, even I give him what he wants but not this time. He wants an Xbox 360, he’ll have to save up for it. I made him a deal, that if he saves up from now until Christmas, I’ll cover the remaining costs of the system. He doesn’t work so it’s hard for him to get money. I told him that he if he does household chores, I’ll give him an allowance.

I started off by giving him ten dollars a week just to take out the garbage every Sunday night. So far, he hasn’t missed a day. But then my girlfriend told me that ten dollars a week to take out the garbage was a bit too much and she’s right. Taking out the trash takes about five minutes. So, Kevin’s making ten dollars for five minutes which is equivalent to one hundred twenty dollars an hour.

In order to justify the ten dollars a week, another task was added to his weekly chores list. Along with taking out the garbage, he’ll have to do the dishes as well. But he won’t be doing the dishes on a weekly basis, he’ll be doing it in a daily basis. Reports from my mom says that he’s doing a good job as well. I guess he really wants an Xbox 360.

To date, he has one hundred sixty dollars saved up. According to my calculations, he should have half that much so he’s making extra money somewhere. It’s good that he’s learning to save. Basically, that’s the habit that I’m trying to get him into. When it comes time pay for the Xbox, I’m not going to take his money. I’m just going to let him keep. So, hopefully he’ll learn his lesson and save up more often.

5 replies on “Save up for it”

  1. awww that’s sweet of you Don. You are a really good person. I was just showing your webpage to one of my co-workers he is going to mohawk for web design. cao

  2. lol awesome little lesson for today’s youngsters. awesome job don. keep up the good work kevin, you can do it!

  3. hehehe.. Thanks Ricky! Just so you know, Kevin doesn’t read my blogs.. if he did, he’d probably stop saving because he knows I’ve already got him the Xbox.. 😛

  4. Instead of just letting him keep the money, what about giving him the choice of putting that money in the bank so it can earn interest? Maybe a locked in GIC to start – something that will be hard to get at.

    If he was planning on spending that money on the X-Box – he has the mindset that it will be gone. But if he puts that money to work for him maybe he will “catch the bug” of saving – especially if he sees growth or interest.

    If he just gets to spend the money as he pleases AND gets an X-Box – he may have trouble learning about proper money management and this may compound the problem of being the youngest child who is getting spoiled as it is?

    My dad took me to the bank when I first started making money (McDonald’s) and forced me to invest – I felt so grown up and it made me want to be responsible with the money. It wasn’t so much the prospect of having more through growth – it was the act of doing an “adult thing”.


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