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Friday, June 17, 2005

A Woman's Worth

The Crafty Conservative

I'm about to enter into negotiations with Sugar Daddy for an allowance. It's for our own good. I know we're now richer than we ever have been and it's all I can do not to go squander every last cent (not really, but it's a lot easier to justify spending $10 on an outfit for Big Apple than hoping for hand me downs or a Wal-mart clearance).

Salary.com says that a stay at home mom should be earning (on average) $131,471 a year. They got this number by averaging the salaries of the following:
1. Day Care Center Teacher
2. Van Driver
3. Housekeeper
4. General Maintenance Worker
5. Cook
6. CEO
7. Nurse

They counted a 40 hour work week plus 80 hours of overtime. I know I'm not worth getting paid as a housekeeper, general maintenance worker, or a nurse. Sugar Daddy pretty much takes over in those cases. He's also great to take care of the kids whenever I need him to so the overtime hours could be cut in half. That still makes me worth quite a chunk of change. I know that a lot of my "salary" is used for my share of the living expenses. Let's say that taking away the overtime and the jobs I don't do, my salary would be $45K/yr. Two-thirds of that can be used as living expenses (food, shelter, basic needs). So I'm down to around $16K/yr. That's still quite a bit of an allowance.

Here's the dilemma. I'm thinking of asking for anywhere from $5-$15 a day. That would be $1825-$5475/yr. The range is because I don't know what I would be responsible for buying with my allowance. If it is just frivolous money (lunch out with my still non-existent friends, yarn, purses, Neil Diamond concerts, etc...) I would go for the lower range. But, if I'm expected to budget household items (like new furniture and outdoor toys for the kiddos) I may go for the upper range.

I haven't discussed any of this with the spouse as of yet. I'm still trying to formulate my "game plan". Any advice?

6 comments:

  1. My partner and I both have our mad money allowances that are just for us. This does not include things for the house, vet bills, groceries, etc. I think that it is important for you to have money that is just for YOU. Not for the kids, the house, or anything else. Budget in a certain amount for toys, lawn furniture, etc. into the household budget. That way you won't begin to resent anything or anyone else. This solved a lot of our problems! You and SD should both have a monthly mad money allowance (the same amount because you2 are partners in this thing). If he needs lunch money for work or anything like that, that money should come from the household budget because it's a work requirement. Hope that helps!

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  2. I think that I have some insight to offer on this. My advice is to link the allowance to things he cares about. CEOs often have their compensation linked to the company's financial milestones. I can imagine that if certain family financial milestones were met first, a large element of resistance would dissapear. This is just good capitalism--it gives everyone a financial incentive to do the right thing.

    P.S. I know that this may not be totally PC in this forum, but $131k is a bit of a joke based on oportunity cost, and 80 hrs of overtime/wk is just excessive to the extreme. Who do you know that earns $131k?! I really wouldn't mention that number to SD for fear of triggering his critical analysis as it did mine.

    P.P.S. Your proposal seems moderate and reasonable dispite my peeves with Salary.com.

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  3. I just wanted to agree with Eric about the $131,000 being a bit over-the-top in my opinion too. And I am an at-home Mom. It's D who gets an allowance here. He does earn the money, but he's also an impulse-buyer and I am not. (hey-I love to spend too, but one of us had to be the thrifty one) The upside to this is when I actually do want something, I get it since he knows that's a rare occurance.

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  4. I think having an allowance is so important! We have benefitted so much from it. It's a good way to feel okay about spending money without feeling like you're taking food money away from the family.

    Here's how ours works:

    We have two sections to our budget, budgeted items (food, mortgage, phone, heat, college funds for kids, car expenses, insurance...everything you must pay to live) and unbudgeted items (toys for the kids, home decorating items, clothes for all of us, Home Depot, Home Depot, Home Depot...).

    Allowance is part of our budgeted items. Jason and I each get an allotted amount each month. We can do whatever we want with it. That way Jason can save up for speakers and I don't get mad at him for buying them. And I can save up for...usually nothing, I squander my money. But I've been known to spend it on Pampered Chef cookware and Stampin Up stuff. Sometimes I'll buy a toy for Dave or an outfit for Liz that they really don't need but I want to get for them. Anyway, it's all yours to do whatever you want with it. Sometimes when we get some unexpected money (like work bonuses or Christmas money) we split it. It makes Jason not spend to much and helps me spend something on myself. He's the shopper in the family and would go nuts without allowance. On the other hand, without allowance I would never spend a dime, just save it all forever. Good luck!

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  5. I forgot to mention we also have a family fun money budget for dates and doing family stuff (zoo, baseball games, Wendy's, babysitters...). That's a budgeted item because what good is life without some FAMILY FUN!!!!!!!!!

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  6. I stay at home also but i also am in charge of the budget b/c my DH loves to buy buy buy!I have everything budgeted bills, gas, groceries, pet needs, stamps, and a fun fund, etc. LOL so DH's the one who gets the allowance... i know it's his money but like i said before. spend spend spend...anyways. he uses it for little things eating out with his work buddies, buying video games etc. he got used to if while he was in Iraq so it doesn't bother me plus he likes it also for when he want to surprise me with flowers or something he doesn't have to ask for the check book..etc.. (really i think he just likes to buy games with out feeling bad for buying YET ANOTHER one) LOL for myself if i want or need anything i always discuss it with him first. i'm really good at talking myself out of purchases i don't need. (even my yarn purchases!) the bigger things we save for (yard furniture etc) and the kiddos we buy things for when they need them or we need to get them something LOL anyways i think your$5-$15 is a good allowance for you! each family is different so you have to find what works for you guys. i hope that this has helped you some!

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