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I can't afford to work

(13 Posts)
laura2323 Sat 17-May-14 12:05:45

Sorry if this is the wrong place and a bit all over the place But I am stumped!

I have a 7month old dd and I've been unsuccessfully looking for work for the past 3 years since leaving uni. I have had a few temp contracts but nothing permanent.
I apply for 50-60 jobs a month maybe more when I get some time. I have trailed the internet, newspapers and walked for hours handing CV everywhere. Before dd was born I volunteered. In these past 3 years I have only heard back from 4 companies who offered me temporary contracts (1 each in admin, customer service, retail and bar work). I am not focusing on one industry I will gladly take any job as long as it's a steady wage.
I had a job interview yesterday and now I am worried that I'm going to have to turn the job down if I am successful. I will be earning £199 a week before tax.
However childcare is £150 a week (childminder) or £210 a week (nursery) plus £50 a week travel (which includes travel to and from childminder/nursery). So obviously I would be out of pocket just by working.
At the moment I am a SAHM but it is not for me at all. My oh works crazy shifts sometimes coming home just to sleep. I have no family at all and his parents are in their 70s with numerous health problems. They have said they will help with childcare but I feel like a burden on them. They cannot pick her up off the floor, they cannot carry her for more than 5 minutes, they cannot lift the pram when folded into their car and after 3 hours of looking after her (they minded her when went for the interview) they were exhausted.
At the moment we are skint, and I mean we are lucky to have £5 at the end of the month. I am not "entitled" (hate that word) to SMP/MA as didn't earn enough, nor JSA as partner earns literally £2.50 or so too much a year.
We get no tax credits as I don't work so no need to pay for childcare at the moment.
I want to work, I NEED to work, but unless I am on £250+ a week (very unlikely in my area) we would be worse off.
What can I do? I'm stuck in a rut!

notapizzaeater Sat 17-May-14 12:08:27

Have you run it through a benefits checker ? You might qualify for some of the child care costs ?

laura2323 Sat 17-May-14 12:12:04

Yes according to entitled to.com will get some which would help a lot but I will then only have £40 a week to take home! On their site at the bottom it actually states we'd be minus 215 a month if I work!

It's an absolute travesty that people are better off not working in some cases. Well done to you though for trying!

Could you get something part time? If you do the right amount of hours your benefits shouldn't be effected.

Do you live somewhere like London because getting only that amount of job interviews doesn't seen right.

caroldecker Sat 17-May-14 12:20:35

If you are taking home £40 a week, you can't be worse off

laura2323 Sat 17-May-14 12:24:18

I live in Liverpool. We don't get any benefits for work to effect! I've been on employability courses, had countless recruitment agencies look at cv. Like I said it's not even as though I'm focusing on one area. I can't even get a cleaning job because I don't have a health and safety certificate! Just very disheartening.
There isn't even any recognition that companies have received my Application.

StormyBrid Sat 17-May-14 12:42:45

You don't get any benefits now, but it's still worth checking the benefit calculator - you both need to be working to qualify for working tax credits. Unless your partner's earning a fortune, of course. But part-time plus tax credits may be doable as you wouldn't be paying full time nursery fees. There's also the free hours at three, worth bearing in mind during your calculations. Good luck!

Can you commute to Wigan OP? I can put a good word in for a few places?

laura2323 Sat 17-May-14 13:37:37

Tequila thanks for the offer. I do drive but don't have a car so getting to Wigan would be a mission!

Ah okay if you're circumstances change let me know. My bf is a manager at a place who is looking for someone too x good luck

pluCaChange Tue 20-May-14 14:27:20

What about if you sacrifice salary for chilcare vouchers? That boosts the value of your salary, by taking childcare out of it before tax. Both you and your OH could get the vouchers

Is your OH taking all his holidays? Could he take his full complement (and ensure he gets NI contributions taken off the tax for his holiday periods), to ease the domestic pressure while he's around?

sezamcgregor Thu 22-May-14 14:53:10

I was going to recommend childcare vouchers.

It is also easier to get a job once you've got a job, so perhaps better to take something now so that you can continue looking while earning.

Could you work nights or a contrasting shift to DP?

Once your DD is old enough to get a free pre-school place, that will reduce costs so it's only really right now that you will be making such a small amount.

Another alternative is to become a childminder and not have to pay for childcare?

Angelwoes Thu 22-May-14 19:54:34

If you can work over 16 hours a week you will get working tax credit. You should also be getting child tax credit. Also, if you are under a threshold joint income you can get 75% of nursery fees paid through the child element of working tax credit smile

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