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Is it worth working for thirty quid a week?

(59 Posts)
worthitornot Tue 05-Mar-13 13:42:07

I'm due back to work soon from maternity, I've asked for time off over the summer as I can't afford to pay for summer clubs for my 6yr old and for my baby to go to the childminder.

When I go back to work I'll clear less than £30 a week - not including petrol for commuting and all the quids here and there for school fundraising and things like that. My husband earns reasonably well so I doubt we'd get benefits etc, and to be honest it's not so much the money, just the futility of it all. I'm sure there must be so many people giving up jobs they like because working isn't economically viable.

I get the impression work isn't overly happy about me being off over the summer but are prepared to go with it, which I'm grateful for, but they don't realise I would be PAYING to work if I came back during the summer. I think it would all grate less if I didn't know they'd been unable to find anyone to cover my role for the amount they pay me so had got someone in on a higher salary.

I don't want to give up work because I fear when I'd be able to go back in a few years, I'd be pushing 40 and unemployable - but right now it's a tempting option. I guess I need to ask for a raise.

Sorry for the rant, just wanted to get it off my chest. I'll prepare to be flamed by people saying I should be grateful for what I've got!

MortifiedAdams Tue 05-Mar-13 13:43:54

What are you going to do next summer?

Mintyy Tue 05-Mar-13 13:44:30

In my experience women of "pushing 40" who have already had their children are not unemployable.

sausagesandwich34 Tue 05-Mar-13 13:46:10

Do you not have family money in your house?

Is your husband not paying half the childcare?

If you step out of work now it will be very difficult to go back later and it would probably be at a lower grade than you are now

You aren't a single parent, childcare is a shared cost but if you want to be a sahm and it's right for your family but its not just a decision that affects your family now, it will have implications for years to come

Jengnr Tue 05-Mar-13 13:46:45

I wouldn't do it. 30 quid a week isn't worth leaving the baby for imo.

Bejeena Tue 05-Mar-13 13:48:06

Why do you think you'll be unemployable when you're pushing 40? Surely if you have had both your children by then and they are older you are in a better position as far as any potential employer sees it as you won't go off on maternity leave again.

Personally I don't get your argument and I myself would not be leaving my baby with someone else to look after for the total benefit of £30 a week.

To be honest in your situation I wouldn't even be asking for a raise, I wouldn't accept it even if it was double.

Jengnr Tue 05-Mar-13 13:48:47

Sausages, it's still family money. The family profit would be 30 quid a week. Whose salary it comes out of is immaterial, surely.

redskyatnight Tue 05-Mar-13 13:49:39

You have to think long term with children this age.
Childcare for the baby will only go down and your salary will only go up.
Having a job in a company means possible opportunities for advancement.

How secure is DH's job? I always think 1 income families are potentially at risk.

What field are you in? If you did have a break, would you want to go back into the same field?

cassgate Tue 05-Mar-13 13:49:51

This is the very reason why I gave up work when I had kids. 10 years ago now. I earned a reasonable wage but when you took into account travel costs and child care fees it worked out that I would have very little left at the end of each month. I was effectively working to pay someone else to look after the kids. For me it was a no brainer and I never went back to work. Both kids are now at school and at times I think it would be nice to go back to work but again it comes back to the same think what ever I earned I would be paying straight back out again for someone to look after the kids after school and during the school holidays.

Downandoutnumbered Tue 05-Mar-13 13:50:52

Are you factoring in employer /your own pension contributions when you say you'll be working for £30 per week?

Definitely worth asking for a pay rise if you've done your research and you're paid less than the going rate for the job. And if you like your job it's worth gritting your teeth and hanging in there for the stage when you don't have to fork out for childcare any more.

Bearbehind Tue 05-Mar-13 13:51:08

TBH it doesn't sound like you or your employer are getting a very good deal here?

If the £30 excludes travelling costs you won't have anything left really.

Your employer is hardly likely to be pleased at having to manage through the holiday periods without you so isn't likely to offer you any more money for the time you are available. It's not their fault child a us so expensive and at the nd of the day they have a job that needs doing.

Unless you work in an industry where you have to keep up to date with recent developments or practices, I would think you would be far more employable as a full timer in a few years time than a part timer who begrudges the situation now.

Bearbehind Tue 05-Mar-13 13:53:52

*child a us - childcare is blush bloody iPads

ShirleyB25 Tue 05-Mar-13 13:53:56

I would go with what will make you happy and suit your family's needs now. What's the point of busting a gut to work when you've got a primary school age child and baby? This is why all those school term time jobs are in high demand even if not well paid...

It might be harder to get a full time 'full on' job later, but won't be impossible. P'haps get something part-time now eg, childminding? or something along those lines

ISeeRedPeople Tue 05-Mar-13 13:55:28

Do you have a pension and other non-salary benefits that might make the take home pay more palatable? I, and many others, are in a similar position (and I will have two under 2 so will be doing it for over a year) but I try to focus on the total reward because if I just think about the money I'd go mad.

MoreBeta Tue 05-Mar-13 13:55:33

No it isnt worth it and is the main reason many women don't go back to work. The UK does not allow people to write off childcare costs against tax like many countries.

The only problem with stopping work now though is that it is very hard to go back later. DW just went back to full time work just 3 days ago and that was after 13 years of shared SAHP and she did work hard in between keeping up her skills. She is now working for 10% of what she used to get paid so she really isnt in it for the money.

BlueberryHill Tue 05-Mar-13 13:56:30

I was faced with a similar dilemma, whether or not to work, I would have cleared about £200 a month, but that would have excluded holiday clubs for summer hols for my oldest, similar child. I decided not to work, financially the pay off didn't outweigh the non financial costs to the family, just the stresses of getting in late and feeding everyone and getting them to sleep. I just didn't fancy the conveyor belt 4 nights a week.

The twins will get early years funding from Sept so I'm gearing up to go back to work and really looking forward to it. I'm the other side of 40 and thinking of retraining, I won't go back in at my previous level but I don't want to, I would like to be there for the children more than my previous job would have let me.

As for the family income bit, when I do the sums I base it on my income as the financial impact is based on whether I work or not, not my husband, as I want to look at the marginal impact. My DH pays for all of the childcare at the mo as well as everything else.

whiteandyellowiris Tue 05-Mar-13 13:57:27

i thought this was going to day a 30 quid a day not a week

for me personally no way

but depends if you enjoy your job and want to stay there long term, sound sliek they dont pay you enough too

CockyFox Tue 05-Mar-13 13:58:39

I don't think it is worth it, I didn't go back after Mat Leave as I would have been working 40hr weeks for £9 a month ( and that £9 would have gone on petrol to get there).
But I was 22 and knew even if I had 10 years out I would have plenty of time to retrain and have a good career even if I couldn't get back into nursery nursing. I don't know if I would have made the same decision if I didn't have time on my side.

BeckAndCall Tue 05-Mar-13 13:59:07

Do you like what you do OP? Do you want to be doing it - or the next step up on the career ladder - in 3 or 5 years time? If so, that is a good reason to carry on.

And child care will get cheaper as the children get older - longer school days and nursery places all help.

It's a really difficult - and personal - decision. For me, it as worth paying the nanny the majority of my salary ( after tax) to set me up for future years. But not everyone feels the same. And who knows what the employment opportunities might be 5 years from now?

Snoopingforsoup Tue 05-Mar-13 13:59:42

I wouldn't worry, 40 is not unem

BikeRunSki Tue 05-Mar-13 14:01:53

I've just gone back to work for £11 net profit to our family/household income a day in my take home salary. Except we've moved offices and now we have to pay to park so it's actually £3.50 less profit.

But, that is from take home pay after NI and pension is paid. And as someone said above, childcare will only go down and my salary (hopefully ) will only go up. I work in a fairly specialist field of a profession with massive unemployment at the moment, so resignation would be professional suicide. DS starts school in September. Wrap around care and school dinners are not much cheaper than his childcare bill with his 15 hours subsidy at the moment.

Snoopingforsoup Tue 05-Mar-13 14:02:03

Sorry, hit post !
40 is not unemployable. Definitely not.
If you want to work, continue to do so. £30 a week is not a great deal in monetary terms but a job you like and which you can return to shouldn't be underestimated.
It's a tough call. Good luck deciding what to do.

TheKelda Tue 05-Mar-13 14:03:40

I'm in a similar position OP, I also have a 6 year old & a baby and am due back in Sept. After travelling costs & childcare, the family income goes up by a whole tenner a week. If I had a career, it would be an easy decision as it would be worth it in the short term but I don't, it's just a job.

It depends on how important your job and actually being at work is for you OP. Good luck with your decision, I'm putting mine off for a few months.

Viviennemary Tue 05-Mar-13 14:06:39

It depends on how much you like your job and how many hours you do. And if you actually enjoy going out to work and meeting different people. Don't think of the money alone unless you actually can't do without it. And then of course it's different. It is difficult to decide what to do. And all the childcare fees although they seem to go on forever and ever, they don't.

cerealqueen Tue 05-Mar-13 14:06:45

It might not be worth it financially, but if you want to keep up to date with your skills, your profession etc it might be. You would continue to progress career wise.

I take offence at the idea of 'pushing 40 and unemployable though.' Would you say that about a man?? No.

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