Daily Dupaco

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Inflation and the Tooth Fairy

Our son reached a fun milestone last month: He lost his first tooth!

He found a crisp dollar bill under his pillow the following morning, and he was on cloud nine.

Hopefully, he doesn't hear about the new survey by payment processor Visa Inc.

The survey found that kids this year are getting an average of $3.70 per lost tooth, a 23 percent jump over last year's rate of $3, according to a recent Associated Press story. If you've been following the annual survey, that's a 42 percent spike from the $2.60 per tooth the Tooth Fairy gave in 2011.

The amount kids receive from the Tooth Fairy depends on where they live. Midwestern kids received the least, at $3.30 a tooth, according to the story.

It turns out that many parents keep upping the price in an effort to prevent their children from receiving the lowest amount among their friends, according to the AP story.

While my husband and I would feel bad if our son later decided he got the raw end of the deal compared to his pals, we approached our decision the same way we do other parenting issues: We made the call based on what's appropriate for our family. We want to celebrate the milestone while also keeping it in perspective. After all, we have two other children who will soon be losing 20 teeth apiece, too.

If you're a parent on the fence about how much the Tooth Fairy should bring your children, consider this: It really comes back to basic budgeting. Rather than worry about keeping up with the Joneses, determine a reasonable amount within your family's budget.

And yes, there's an app for this, too. If you're still curious about how much parents in your age group, income bracket and education level are giving their kids, check out Visa's downloadable Tooth Fairy Calculator app, available for iPhones and iPads on iTunes.

By Emily Kittle

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