A mum has come under fire after sharing that she charges her five-year-old daughter rent.

Essence Evans posted on Facebook that not only does she charge her little girl rent, she bills her for water, electricity, cable and even food.

“I make my five year old pay rent,” shared Essence, who went on to explain exactly why.
“Every week she gets $7 dollars in allowance,” wrote.

“But I explained to her that in the real world most people spend most of their paycheck on bills with little to spend on themselves. So I make her give me $5 dollars back. $1 for rent $1 for water $1 for electricity $1 for cable and $1 for food.

“The other $2 she gets to save or do what she wants with. Now, what she doesn’t know is the $5 is actually going away in her savings account which I will give back to her when she turns 18.

“So if she decides to move out on her own she will have $3,380 to start off. This strategy not only prepares your child for the real world. But when they see how much real bills are they will appreciate you for giving them a huge discount.”

Some people quite liked the way she was teaching her daughter financial stability, “She is at least teaching her responsibility instead of just giving her money to spend out. Five is a good age. It doesn’t say anywhere that the child isn’t allowed to be a child. She is just teaching her responsibility early on.”

While others thought it was far too young to start off worrying about money.

“I see your point, but she is too young to have to worry about finances,” posted one.

“Good way to stress kids out. That’s not allowance if it’s rent. Not trying to offend you. I pay for electricity, clothing and food because it’s neglect if you don’t. It’s part of your parental obligation. Your idea is better for a teen who is working.”

“Let kids be kids for a while. Grownup issues are for grownups. Period. She is five,” she wrote.

Her post has been shared over 295K times and received over 41K comments.

What do you think? Is this mum teaching her child great life skills? OR starting off a bit too early with financial stress?

Share your comments below.

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  • It’s a good idea but I think perhaps a bit too young.


  • Ha! That’s funny. Why didn’t I think of that :)


  • Great idea. Not sure about starting it quite that young but it is a wonderful way to get kids prepared for real life


  • I agree with the mothers method. It’s very similar to my kids pocket money method. Some in the bank, some for themselves and some for buying necessary items (in this case it’s presents for family) there’s nothin wrong with teaching children money handling and life skills at a young age!


  • This is an amazing idea, a really good habit to get into children into. Practice is key and its never too early to begin a good savings habit.


  • Good onya Mum… Having had six children and now having grandkids come through, I think this is a brilliant idea and I wish I had thought of it way back when. When I take my grandkids shopping these days, to get them to stop touching everything, I have explained to them that if they do not have any money on them to buy the item, then do not touch. They now tell me the same thing. And they get very excited when I give them some money to go shopping as they know they can touch some items. Teaching finance and economics to kids at an early age does NOT hurt them.


  • It is a strange way of doing things. How old will the girl be when she explains to her that everything costs money and that was what she was trying to teach her??? My Mum and I had our niece staying with us and she saw a cute pillow in a op shop she wanted and started crying. She had never asked for anything before. We decided to let her have it. Mum came up with an idea. So Missy understood that you pay for things and buy them – not everything is free, Mum gave her part of the money to give the cashier and Mum handed the lady the rest of it. I went ahead and explained to the lady what we were doing and why. She was very understanding, was so good with Missy. I stayed back and thanked the lady. She said it was a good idea, that maybe if more did on an odd occasion that they may be less shoplifting.


  • Don’t think this is bad, since $2 pocket money for a 5 year old girl is a beautiful amount. Introducing these idea’s and setting directly money apart for when she’s 18 can be a great way of saving money and teaching kids about spending money.


  • Personally I’d wait until my children were older to charge them rent and bills as I see these as necessities for parents to provide for their children anyway.


  • Well, my daughter is 15 and doesn’t get any allowance. :-)
    But I think her approach is not bad. The girl gets 2 dollars a week anyway and this way she learns where the rest of the allowance goes.


  • There is a meme on Facebook about the best thing about childhood was no bills. This poor girl is missing out on that innocence. The closest I’ve come to this is having my nephew clean my car and when he lost $2 of the money I paid him I told him to consider it tax.


  • I think this is too young. Let kids be kids and when they are old enough to actually understand what you’re trying to teach them- go for it.


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