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To ask if any of you with children who are self employed saved before having children and if so what percentage of annual income/figure did you aim for?

(17 Posts)
childlessormore Fri 30-Jan-15 23:50:12

Just that really. I am concerned that as a self employed person I will not have maternity pay beyond the limited maternity allowance and will still have some business maintenance costs during maternity plus worry I may take a while to pick up work again to same level when I decide to go back. I would like a cushion but would like to know what others have done.

wobblyweebles Fri 30-Jan-15 23:59:14

During my first pregnancy we saved about 25k. We knew DH would be going back to college for a year and as a self-employed person I wouldn't have much maternity pay.

We were lucky that I was able to live with my MIL, and DH had a well-paid job in London. The downside is that we didn't live together for that period, but it was worth it.

DodgedAnAsbo Sat 31-Jan-15 00:01:24

Not sure if I get the point of the question, but as a business owner I use the 'rule of threes'
one third of my money goes into everyday expenses, incl helping family
one third goes into holidays
one third goes into saving


egnahc Sat 31-Jan-15 05:08:19

Isnt the rule one third tax?

TeacupDrama Sat 31-Jan-15 05:50:56

You need to save enough for however much time you plan off, obviously will be less tax to pay, class 2 NI do not need to be paid while claiming SMP ( paid for 39 weeks)

You need to work out expenditure some savings like no travel costs, some extras like needing heating on more at home, nappies etc

How is your business operating while you are away and what are the underlying costs etc

GailTheGoldfish Sat 31-Jan-15 07:30:25

Depending on what you do and what you plan to do for childcare, could you pick up a small amount of work after a few months? I found it was better to do some work from home four months after DD was born, I was clear with clients about what I was prepared to do and my DM watched DD when necessary. It just helped to keep me in the loop instead of disappearing completely for a year. Obviously not possible for everyone but worked for us as we didn't have a big lump of savings.

Catsize Sat 31-Jan-15 08:19:21

Yes, both children were born thanks to two particular payments I received (we had to pay for treatment). In addition to that, my overdraft was extended to £5k and I put lots on interest-free credit cards. The joys! I am the main earner so it was tricky.
I found it wasn't when I first went off that it was the problem as money kept trickling in. It was more that I was broke for weeks when I went back to work!

Catsize Sat 31-Jan-15 08:21:12

Re:what Gail said, be careful, as you are only allowed ten 'keeping in touch days' whilst claiming Statutory allowance, which technically can include sending one work-related email(?!).

LokiBear Sat 31-Jan-15 08:36:17

4 mortgage payments. However, my maternity package was v good. Only had to get by on smp for the final three months. Having the mortgage payments saved meant that dh just needed to cover bills with his salary so we still had disposable income.

hettie Sat 31-Jan-15 08:46:50

We saved quite a bit, ( about a third of my annual sslry) but needed it as I used the time at home with little kids to start retraining in a different field (I had to pay course fees). I got SMP but didn't really earn anything much for 7 years. We were very frugal, and only just coming back from that phase. Obviously we've taken a, massive financial hit, but my freelance career was totally not compatible with family life...

museumum Sat 31-Jan-15 08:53:28

I just saved enough to cover my outgoings for the time I was off plus a couple of months. Those outgoings being mainly pension and life insurance and phone. But also my professional memberships. My business had no other ongoing costs (I left my rented do-working space).
Dh and the MA covered household expenses and child benefit covered our baby groups etc.
We were lucky to be given or loaned most of the bug baby purchases.

museumum Sat 31-Jan-15 08:55:45

Co-working space! Not do-working!

Also I used my kit days (all ten) and only claimed MA for six months.

JadedAngel Sat 31-Jan-15 08:56:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

childlessormore Sun 01-Feb-15 22:24:05

Thank you everyone, a lot of things here to think about and good to hear how it worked for others. Have worried about how I would manage both financially and also career wise taking time out when self employed in a competitive market. I ideally think I would want to do what you suggested Gail and go back to at least very low level hours quickly to keep my hand in. I have thought though about the what ifs - what if the pregnancy has complications or my child is unwell etc. I guess you cannot plan for everything though but I am a bit of an uber planner and the unknown is scary for me.

sleepingdragon Sun 01-Feb-15 22:33:03

I've paid off all the bills I could a year in advance, so I had minimum outgoing from my account except week to week expenses. Some of the call centre people struggled to understand what I wanted to do, so it must be unusual, but I've found it a really helpful way to manage my money.

Sn00p4d Sun 01-Feb-15 22:33:14

I saved enough to take 6 months off (I'm due in two weeks) but ended up starting mat leave early due to my ill health, baby has jst been diagnosed with CDH so if she survives will be in NICU and I've no idea when I'll return to work. If she doesn't then I'll be back at work in three months when my full pay ends cos I won't have a baby to look after. If she's very ill I'll be off as long as it takes. I've discovered it's impossible to plan these things, which is hard for me, I'm a controlling list maker and the uncertainty is not fun!

I think it Makes sense to save as much as you possibly can, you never know what's round the corner!

UniS Sun 01-Feb-15 23:19:31

Took a long hard look at finances , decided to pay off the mortgage even tho it meant both of us emptying savings. If all else failed the house was paid for. We had previously moved to a position of living on DH's income and saving/ using for extras mine when we started ttc.

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