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Should You Pay Children to Snowplow? 

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What if your children spontaneously decide to go door-to-door and volunteer to shovel the neighbors' sidewalks? Should everyone along the path be charged? However, I would make an exception for the elderly individuals across the street. 


How much is the fee? Obviously, conditions are not always simple, and any issue involving Snow Removal North Vancouver can be uncomfortable for both children and adults. Occasionally, for instance, children are hesitant to set a price for their services, and adults frequently wind up overpaying or underpaying. 


It is preferable to negotiate both the fee and the job in advance. I would estimate that $10 to $20 is a reasonable starting point for most snow shoveling assignments. However, be prepared to change based on your expectations. Do you want your children to shovel your driveway and sidewalk? And do you want them to shovel all the way to the corner, or just to your property line? 



If the children next door do volunteer their services, you can certainly reward them with cookies and hot cocoa. The Times reporter who interviewed me, Alina Tugend, informed me that one of her neighbors later gave her kid a gift card to a sporting-goods store in exchange for his snow-shoveling efforts. That wasn't required, but it was a thoughtful gesture. 


Two vital lessons The objective is to strike a balance between teaching children how to earn money and when to be nice. Several winters ago, my husband shoveled out our neighbors across the street with our son Peter. Peter wondered why he was not being paid at the moment. But the larger lesson of assisting others must have stuck. A month ago, when an electrical fire forced another set of neighbors into the street in the middle of the night, Peter stepped outside to invite them to spend the night with us. He informed us, “I believed that was what you would have wanted me to do.” 


Recently, I received a phone call from a reporter from The New York Times, who asked me an extremely topical question: Should children be compensated for helping their neighbors shovel snow? Or should shoveling be regarded as a neighborly act for which no payment is anticipated or requested? And if children are paid, what is the standard wage? 



I stated that the answer depended on the circumstances. If your children have already established a small business by mowing lawns in the summer, shoveling snow in the winter, watering plants, and collecting newspapers when neighbors are away, then they should be compensated for their efforts. However, if it is a matter of doing a nice deed by assisting the elderly couple across the street with snow removal, no remuneration is required. 



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