Are you interested in teaching your kids about finances or just want a more efficient way to pay them their pocket money? Then take a look at this GoHenry review to see if it’s right for you.
It’s quite scary to write it, but I’ve just figured out that it’s been 21 years since I left school. I also went to university, which means in total, I spent almost 17 years in education.
In that time, I learned two languages, one of which I can remember about three words of. I spent years trying to figure out the circumference of a circle, something I have never used since. And worst of all, I spent almost five years reading various Shakespeare books. I think he should have stopped after the first one.
But something I didn’t learn about was finance. I knew next to nothing about banking, finance or bills. My dad would give me £5 every week, I would spend it in the shop within a few hours, and that was it.
So, I have tried to teach my children about finance and the importance of budgeting. But I’m sure many of you will agree that this is easier said than done.
I then found out about a service called GoHenry that could help me in my quest.
Who is GoHenry?
Launched in 2012, they now have over 500,000 members across the UK and the USA. The company that owns GoHenry (GoHenry Limited) is based in Hampshire and has been running since 2007.
And their aim? Taken from their website:
The upshot is that our product gives kids a safe space to learn and occasionally, make mistakes: no debt, no overdrawn accounts, and with the option for parents to jump in and help out if needed.
Ultimately, we want every child to graduate from gohenry with confidence, independence and money sense. We want them to be fully prepared for the digital economy and the rise of a cashless society. And we want them to boldly face adulthood’s later financial pressures, fearlessly navigating some of life’s trickiest waters: their money.
How does it work?
It takes you just a few minutes to open an account online. You then order a free debit card with your child’s name on it. Or, if you’re feeling generous, you can pay £4.99 and order a fully customised card. This should arrive (addressed to your child) within 7 days.
You will then need to load your account (aka parent’s account) with some money.
Next up, you can arrange for a set amount to be transferred from the parent’s account to your child’s account every week. But you aren’t just restricted to that one set transfer. You can also make one-off payments if you’re feeling generous or if you want to reward your child. If you manage to convince your child to clean your car (and not scratch it), why not send them an extra £2?
You can also create savings goals so that a certain % of your child’s pocket money can be set aside each week.
With GoHenry, you have overall control of the account.
This is a great learning experience for children. Their card can be used in-store, online or at an ATM. It may take them a while, but it will really help them get to grips with having an adult-like account.
And as a parent, you have a great amount of control. You can choose how your child is able to use their card. Don’t want them shopping online? Then just turn off the option. You can control the card from either your computer on an app from your phone.
You can also see where and when they are spending their money.
If the card goes missing or you just want to stop access, you can turn it off with a touch of a button.
GoHenry has pretty much thought of everything and there are only really three downsides I can see.
The first is that as a parent, you can only have four child accounts linked. For the vast majority, that isn’t a problem, but it could prove awkward for bigger families.
The 2nd is that you can only load your account once per month for free. If the parent’s account runs out of money, it will cost an extra 50 pence to top it up.
The 3rd and this is a big one for me, is the monthly cost.
Each account costs £2.99 per child, per month. So as a father of three, I would be spending almost £9 per month or over £100 per year.
Let’s be honest, this isn’t a huge amount, but I can’t help thinking that I would just be better off giving that money straight to my children.
My GoHenry review conclusion
I do actually love the idea behind GoHenry. The whole process is very slick and you can have control over almost everything.
It’s just that I’m not willing to pay that much for it.
I am more inclined to look towards a mainstream bank account such as the Under 19’s account from TSB. This offers a debit card, internet banking and pays interest of up to 2.5%.
Yes, it doesn’t give a parent the control that GoHenry does, but perhaps we should be giving our children a little more freedom when it comes to spending their money.
GoHenry is currently offering a free trial though, so you could always try it for yourself and see what you think.
And if my GoHenry review has interested, why not take a look to see if you qualify for help towards the cost of school uniform.