Homestead kid business, they can do now…and they should! What better time to instill the entrepreneurial spirit in your kids, than when they are young? Now don’t get me wrong, I think kids need time to be kids; but what I see more today is kids being couch potatoes. A homestead kid business CAN be fun and instill some valuable character traits like responsibility, creativity, diligence, self-confidence and independence (pretty awesome, right?)! Not to mention when they are making their own money they learn the value of it in a real and tangible way. To quote Joel Salatin from Folks This Ain’t Normal, “I’m a big believer that children should have autonomous businesses. This teaches the value of a dollar, persistence, thrift and good math skills.”
So maybe you’re asking, why not just give them an allowance for chores? Chores are good, part of life and certainly part of living on a homestead. But do YOU get paid for your home and farm chores? Or do you have a business/job that pays you money for work done outside of your personal responsibilities? Secondly, is are your children going to be able to earn, through allowance, what they may be able to through a small business?
My 11 year old daughter started a dog poo cleaning service in our neighborhood last year. Her first customer paid her $10 a week for a once a week clean-up after her 2 dogs. We are a one-income family and paying a 10 year old $40 a month wasn’t something I’d budgeted for; this was good money for her! I finally realized she understood the value of her hard-earned money on a trip to the movies. She asked if she could have a candy, to which I said she could if she paid for it herself. After some thought about how much poop had to be cleaned for a $5 candy, she decided to go without.
Now I want to say that I think teens should also consider a business they can run from the homestead but today I want to talk about your under 16 crowd, even under 13. These are businesses that even a fairly young child can run with very little intervention from mom or dad. Depending on your child’s age, experience, etc this homestead kid business may be more of a partnership with you; but that’s a call you have to make. Or perhaps you or another adult can “mentor” them for a time until everyone agrees they are ready to handle it solo….