Advice/support with childcare for working parents(5 Posts)
I haven’t used this site before so I don’t know if I am starting a new post or responding to someone elses!
I was just after some advice. I am 30 and just found out I am expecting my first child. My only worry is affordability of childcare and wondered what the best option would be.
I work full time earning £28k a year and my partner who is also working full time earns £19k a year. Once I go down to statutory maternity pay at 4 months off I’ll have to return to work as we won’t be able to afford our house/bills otherwise. My partner is thinking of dropping a day at work as he earns less so makes more sense him dropping a day. I just wanted to know what help and support is out there for working parents.
Also when a child gets to school age what do parents do in the holidays as we wouldn’t get enough annual leave to cover the holidays?
Thanks to anyone who can help
How tight are finances now? Income is only relevant if you can relate it to your expenditure.
What is advise right now is look to save as much as possible from now to help you through. Take a look at your monthly outgoings too to see what you can reduce (swap utilities etc).
Your dh can take parental leave too, so if you felt you had to go back at 4 months, could they take shared parental leave from 4m to 10m or so? Check what they get from their company as pay for shared parental leave.
Childcare - one of you can claim tax help - basically the govt add 20% into the pot of your childcare bill to cover what you've been taxed. Worth reading up.
Look at local providers. Get some prices from nurseries and childminders.
School - it's a juggling act. You take 2 weeks summer, he takes 2 different weeks, kids go to school holiday club for 2 weeks. Easter, may week and October week- school holiday club or any help you can get from grandparents.
It's also possible to find childminders who will do morning/after school during term time then full time in holidays. I know one who then splits the years amount into 12 so it's equal payments.
For childcare there are nurseries and childminders (and nanny’s but they are expensive). I’d start looking now to understand the cost and visit the possible ones. You may need to get on a waiting list. You may be entitled to working tax credit. You will get child benefit - about £20 per week.
You will accrue annual leave while you are on maternity leave so if you have 20 days per year and take 6 months off, you will have 10 days accrued. You could use this to delay your return or work fewer days to start with (e.g. taking one day per week) if your work agree,
It’s a good idea to start reducing your spending now so you are used to it later.
Finances are good currently. I have done all searches for cheapest utilities etc already. I also have a work lease car so insurance, tax, fuel etc is all paid for by work with a small contribution out of my pay per month.
I will look into the childcare tax thing you mentioned and look into my partner taking the leave instead of me.
As for grandparents/family, I am an only child and my parents live abroad full time and due to the childhood my partner had his family are only seeing our child with one of us present. Although I have considered flying them across to Spain in July, they staying with my parents over summer and then my dad brings them back on a flight at the end of August!
I believe we would be entitled to child benefit due to our earnings.
Information on government help with childcare costs is at childcarechoices.gov.uk .
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