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Working teenager refusing to pay board

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Working teenager refusing to pay board


Working teenager refusing to pay board



I'm after some advice.  My 18 year old daughter finished school last year, and has been working full-time for nearly 12 months.  We are very proud of her.  She started in a contract position, and applied for and was successful in gaining permanent employment at a higher level.  She loves her job, has a lovely boyfriend, wons her own car (she saved half and we paid half when she got her licence) and an active social life.


The problem is she is not meeting her financial or other responsibilities at home.  


Financially, we have agreed on $50/week board (less than 10% of her take home pay), to be paid fortnightly when she is paid. Monthly commitments are insurance on our policy for her car of $70, and $125 to pay for the phone plan she selected and we put on our account.


Other responsibilities at home are basically picking up after herself and helping out with the occasional small task when she is home (which isn't often - and that's ok). 


None of these commitments are met.  This has dragged on for at least 6 months.  Everytime we try to address this in a calm and rational manner she flies off the handle and there is World War 3.  We normally have a great family relationship, and she has a reputation in our small town for being reliable and respectful. 


In desperation we took money out of her account.  This did not go down well, as you can imagine and was admittedly not the correct course of action.


My husband and I are really at our wit's end.  We really want her to meet her responsibilities, as I think we are not doing her any favours by letting her have a free ride - all kids need to learn financial management.  I just can't think of what to do short of kicking her out of home - not something we would ever do.


Has anyone else had this situation?  How did you handle it?



Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: Working teenager refusing to pay board

Hi @miklou,


Sorry I cant really be of help (my eldest is 14) and I'm sure other members will be in a better position to suggest options.


I think you are being more than reasonable in what you are asking of your daughter (actually, it sounds like she's on a pretty good wicket!). Do you know why she refuses to pay her way?


I wonder if there is anything you could do that would incentivise paying? Is she dependent on you in other ways (e.g., paying the phone bill? "Cooking" the meals? Cleaning her clothes?)? Possibly you could provide these services upon receipt of payment.


This approach needs to be done in a respectful manner (not seen as punishment) but with a conversation about how everyone needs to contribute and that you are trying to encourage her to play her part. Sometimes teenagers will take advantage of a situation, and natural consequences need to be imposed.


Anyway, just some food for thought, I'm sure other members may have better solutions for you Smiley Happy


Best of luck!  

Prolific scribe

Re: Working teenager refusing to pay board

Hi there @miklou and welcome to Reachout Smiley Happy I also moved your post to a different section of the forums so that more users are likely to see it. Smiley Happy


I'm sorry to hear you're in this situation with your daughter. It's difficult when you've agreed to terms and they aren't followed. I have never been in this situation myself, but I can see that you do care about your daughter. It's great that you want her to be responsible and able to manage her finances. When you approach her about the topic, is it often at random times? Perhaps setting an agreed upon time to discuss the situation with your daughter might have more success. 


I was also wondering if you bring up your previous agreement with her, if she's not meeting it maybe a way of opening up the conversation could be to make a new agreement. What do you think? 


@Dad4good has offered some fabulous advice already, but I've tagged in some other users to share their fantastic advice as well Smiley Happy @sunflowermom @taokat @Happy @PositiveWhisper

Active scribe

Re: Working teenager refusing to pay board

I think you and your husband have positive intentions in teaching your daughter about managing her finances by paying board now that she is working full time. You’re both requesting a realistic and reasonable board amount from her.
I feel your frustration and agree with the advice provided by others on this forum.
For instance, the timing of when to have a conversation with your daughter regarding her finances and her refusal to commit to paying board. Maybe schedule a suitable time with her to discuss this and before you start, ease into the conversation by setting some simple ground rules for yourself and her to prevent her going off the handle.... For instance ...
- Avoid lecturing. Teens generally don’t like to hear how things used to be or how you think they should be—and may tune out.
• Don’t act as if you have all the answers. Ask your daughter for her ideas on how to handle situation. This shows you value your teen’s thoughts and opinions.
• Keep any judgmental thoughts to your- self.
• Stick with the subject at hand.
• Each person to talk without inter- ruption until they get their the point across. It may take your daughter a few minutes to state what is really on her mind.
• Each person to remain calm
• Listen and be respectful to each other’s point of view, even if you don’t agree with it.
• Goal is to reach a mutual agreement
• Once this occurs, maybe have a written agreement for both you and her sign off on.
If she still resists to pay board, you may need to take affirmative action, show a bit of ‘tough love’ and perhaps consider ceasing her monthly mobile bill or car insurance payments.
It’s not going to be easy to reach mutual decisions, I hope this helps and all the best. Let us know how you go.