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How to Make Money as a 12-Year-Old

It seems that only yesterday your offspring was learning to sit, stand, and walk, and today they are already inquiring about how to make their own money. Whether your kids were born with a silver spoon in their mouths or not, helping them experience what it feels like to make real money will never hurt. However, to do that, you should be well aware of two important things: the legislation base regarding child labour in the UK and the latest side hustles trends.
If you feel like lacking knowledge in any of these questions, we are here to help you fill out all the gaps! In our article, we discuss why parents should encourage their children’s aspirations for making money, explain the intricacies of the UK legislation, and suggest some workable ideas of how 12-year-olds could earn some pin money for themselves.

The Role of Parents in Guiding and Supporting Young Earners

As soon as a pre-teen starts striving for financial independence, it’s their parents who play a crucial role in shaping their financial responsibility and mindset overall. Once prepared and guided properly, a child is highly likely to turn it into a genuinely precious experience and use it for their own good in the future. So what exactly should parents do to help their children grasp the principles of wise money management?

Firstly, parents should remember that they serve as role models for their kids. By consistently demonstrating responsible financial behaviours, like budgeting, saving, investing, and a reasonable approach to spending, parents automatically instill the basic principles of financial literacy in their offspring. Also, by demonstrating the effect of healthy financial habits from the earliest age possible, parents help a child figure out what a positive relationship with money looks like. This is crucial for every single individual who is a participant in our capitalistic to the bone world.

The second and more active approach implies having conversations about money management, financial goal setting, and prioritizing expenditures. By breaking down complex financial concepts and providing simple explanations, parents help their children learn to make more informed decisions regarding spending and saving.

Finally, parents can teach children to wisely handle financial challenges. By cultivating resilience and adaptability from an early age, children will be more capable of successfully navigating financial challenges and finding effective solutions for them. Parents’ supportive behaviour will encourage children to ask questions and seek advice instead of panicking or getting frustrated.

Traditional Jobs: Understanding the Legal Landscape

Another great idea for you, as a parent, is to be armed with up-to-date information regarding the legislative aspect of the issue. According to the official information on GOV.UK, these are the terms under which 12-year-old children are allowed to work traditional jobs in the UK:

  1. Part-time work: Normally, the youngest age a child can work part-time is 13. However, children who are involved in areas like television, theatre, sporting events, or modelling and get paid for it can start working at an earlier age.
  2. Full-time work: Only children who have reached the minimum school leaving page, which is 16, are allowed to work full-time, but no more than 40 hours per week.
  3. Once an individual turns 18, adult employment rights and rules are applied.

Active Restrictions on Child Employment

Starting from the age of 13, it is prohibited for children to work:

  • Without an employment permit issued by the education department of the local council;
  • During school hours;
  • Before 7 am or after 7 pm;
  • For more than one hour before school;
  • For more than 4 hours without taking a 1-hour break;
  • In any environment that may be harmful to their health, well-being, or education;
  • Without having a 2-week break from any work during the school holidays.

During term time and weekend jobs:

  • More than 12 hours per week;
  • More than 2 hours on school days and Sundays;
  • More than 5 hours on Saturdays for 13 to 14-year-olds.

Summer jobs during school holidays:

  • More than 25 hours a week;
  • More than 5 hours on weekdays and Saturdays;
  • More than 2 hours on Sunday.

Pocket Money Power: Smart Ways to Start Earning

The concept of pocket money doesn’t normally imply making children work for it, however, you may encourage your offspring to get some extra cash if… they are ready to go the extra mile.

Financial reward for housework

For instance, offer them to do house chores for your household for money. However, it will work only if they do it voluntarily. Let them pick the chore themselves. Don’t instill any activity, otherwise, it may have an absolutely opposite effect. Instead of developing responsibility, a kid may develop a distaste for any time of housework and also connect the process of making money with discomfort and suffering.

Monetising their hobby

Another workable idea may be encouraging your children to make some extra pocket money from their hobbies. If their hobby can’t be monetised, suggest picking up a new one. Handmade crafts are a pretty interesting niche nowadays, everybody appreciates customised, eco-friendly, or organic goods. You may help your little businessmen create a business plan on sales and support them while they implement it. Not only will it give a valuable lesson about the value of money, but also bring their creativity, a sense of accomplishment, and business acumen to a new level.

Selling stuff they don’t need anymore

Similar to monetising a hobby, a 12-year-old kid may revise their stuff and try to sell something that they don’t use or need anymore such as old toys, books, or clothes items. A cool idea would be to organise a garage sale – not only will you provide a valuable experience to your kids but also have a chance to strengthen the parent-kid bond through this activity. On the flip side, don’t try to make them get rid of something that is in your opinion unnecessary, it will only traumatise the child and plant a seed of resentment. They may start thinking that their own decisions are worthless and subconsciously reject the ability to make them at a more mature age.

Online Possibilities for Young Earners

Passing up online jobs in the digital age we live is a real crime. However, all the online activities 12-year-olds may be engaged in have to be under their parents’ strict supervision. Unfortunately, everybody is exposed to the dangers that the Internet carries in it, and children especially. Parents’ guidance and supervision will protect their children from fraud, negative influence, and mentally traumatic experiences.

So, what do possible online jobs for 12-year-olds look like? Let’s unpack!

Writing

If a pre-teen finds joy in writing, freelance writing may become a perfect side hustle for them. There are several ways how to monetise it:

  • Finding relevant projects on freelance boards;
  • Taking part in junior writing competitions that offer cash prizes;
  • Submitting their pieces to teen journals and magazines and getting a fee for it.

Blogging

Being a blogger is a real trend among youngsters nowadays, furthermore, it can turn into a lucrative business. Even if you, as a parent, can’t wrap your head around the fun of blogging, don’t deprive your kid of an opportunity to make money in a truly fun way. A great idea would be to start a blog on something your kid is passionate about. It can be an Instagram or YouTube blog. In such a way, they will be able to both improve their skills in it and promote themselves as a specialist, in other words, build their personal brand. However, before you two start, get your child prepared for receiving negative or toxic comments and teach them how to healthily deal with those.

Online store

We’ve already mentioned selling your kid’s handmade items, why not sell them online too? There are several online platforms where people showcase and sell the pieces of art they create. It may be digital products like planners, graphic design items, crochet or knitted items, or even creatively refurbished items. You may divide the areas of responsibilities: let’s say, you manage the online store settings, and your offspring produces the goods.

Online Tutoring

Academically gifted children may well help their peers or younger mates who face challenges with particular subjects catch up on those for some extra cash. Now, you don’t even have to go to their place, just start your device and do the job. Tutoring areas may include not only academic studies but also playing a musical instrument or mastering some sport. Parent just have to make sure that this side hustle in no way affects their children’s own studies.

Programming

If your kid is computer savvy, programming may become their bread and butter already today! Freelance platforms swarm with various programming projects. For professional programmers, they may not be appealing, however, for a kid, it’s a great opportunity to start gaining commercial experience which is so valuable for the future job search. You, as a parent, don’t need to understand programming – just become your kid’s manager and handle all the administration and negotiation work.

Neighbourhood Hustle: Local Jobs for 12-year-olds

One of the surefire ways for pre-teems to make some extra money is to offer their services to their neighbours. It’s especially relevant for those whose neighbours are either always busy with work or just elderly people who are somehow limited in physical activity. Here are some examples to consider.

Babysitting job

Young parents are oftentimes fixed on earning money and, therefore, need help with their little offsprings. If a pre-teen already has experience babysitting their own younger siblings, why not turn their knowledge and experience into money? Of course, this job requires a certain level of responsibility and concentration, therefore, you should be certain that your kid can ensure those before pitching the idea.

Pet sitting

Who would reject the opportunity of earning money through interaction with our four-legged friends? Pre-teens who have a special connection with animals should definitely consider the option of helping their neighbours with their pets for money. While adults may be having a hard time allocating sufficient time to entertain their dogs, your 12-year-old kid could be a perfect candidate for a small or medium-sized dog walker role. Besides dog walking, a pre-teen can also do pet sitting for cats, Guinea pigs, rabbits, or even fish while the family is off for vacation.

Washing cars

If your child is into cars, they may try washing cars for making extra money. Give them a couple of lessons on how to do it properly with your own car, and then encourage them to offer their services to your neighbours. The work implies dealing with chemical substances and cleaning agents, that’s why it’s crucial to make sure that your kid isn’t allergic to any of them. As a good alternative, you may come up with more sparing methods of washing and, therefore, protect your kid from any kind of negative influence.

Neighbor’s house chores

People who live in the suburbs or residential neighbourhoods always have something to do about the house. Activities vary depending on the season. This automatically creates a wide range of seasonal jobs for 12 youngsters including shoveling snow in winter, tending vegetable patches in autumn, or watering lawns and flowers in summer.

Creative Ways to Make Your Own Money

In fact, sometimes people make good money out of thin air, you just need to be a bit more inventive! There are some non-standard job ideas for the most creative pre-teens!

Neighbourhood Newsletter Creator

Your kid can create a digital newsletter template and use it to highlight local news, stories, and events and charge a modest fee for it.

Kid’s Services and Products Reviewer

Kids are a target audience today too. It’s way more interesting for them to check their peers’ feedback about a product than from adult reviewers. Such blogs may get very popular and be eventually monetised.

Event Photographer

If your kid is keen on taking pictures, they can make some extra cash by offering their services at local parties and celebrations.

Virtual Assistant

Computer skills are literally hardwired into Gen Z’s little brains. For instance, if you run your own business, offer your kid to handle simple administrative tasks like organising digital files or managing your Google calendar for you.

Plant Sitter

Similar to per sitting, why not offer people help with the plant sitting? This may involve watering and other basic maintenance when their owners are away.

  1. GOV.UK Child Employment
  2. GOV.UK Restrictions on Child Employment
How to Make Money as a 12-Year-Old
Date: 4 February 2024
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