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How do you decide when it's worth going back to work?

(6 Posts)
MrsConnelly Mon 09-Jan-17 17:08:45

I have an interview for an admin job coming up. If I take into account childcare costs and parking (without wear and tear on the car or petrol) I'd be working for about the minimum wage of £6.40 an hour.

I’m trying, unsuccessfully, to settle in my mind what I want. I have a part time job which is worked at the weekends with no travel or childcare costs. Apart from this I’m a stay at home (unmarried) mother with a partner who works full time and supports us.

I’m aware that I’m in a dangerous position being unmarried and that working is the best option. The benefits of taking on more work would be paying into a pension and a little more cash. However, on the downside I would have the stress of working part time 5 days a week and dealing with childcare and general household chores.

Our childcare costs won’t reduce for a few years and the admin position is not one which will lead to a larger salary long term.

Over the years I’ve heard people saying they aren’t making much money by working and some people admitting they're simply clearing their childcare costs. However, I’ve always imagined these people have careers which, once childcare issues settle, will enable them to bring in a good salary.

So, how do you decide when it’s worth starting to work again?

user1483804139 Tue 10-Jan-17 16:05:44

I've not worked for 5 years. Two kids, 5&1. It simply wasn't worth returning as I'd be working just to cover childcare costs. I now work as relief as midday supervisor. Not great pay but it works well with kids.

PotatoWaffleCob Tue 10-Jan-17 16:13:39

I went back to teaching (part time) when DD1 was 18 months. I only went back for a year before I was off on mat leave for DD2. I'm not going back for a few years this time. Cost of wrap around childcare for 2 children under 5 plus petrol and deductions means, as a family, we'd have an extra £150 a month. Not worth it for the work load. DH earns enough.

Babbitywabbit Wed 11-Jan-17 11:12:35

If you're clearing over £6 an hour then you're better off than many working parents! Most people I know who return to work when they have pre school kids are making very little immediate profit, but it's about keeping yourself employable and paying into your pension

Hellmouth Wed 11-Jan-17 11:20:43

This is the dilemma I faced recently. My entire salary will be going on childcare and travel to work. My partner' entire salary already goes on the rent and house hold bills and food.

But I'm going back to work as I have great earning potential and can see that I'll be on about 10k more in 5 years. If I stopped now, I'd have to pick up where I left off.

We did discuss DP staying at home but he works in IT and, in my opinion, could be on double his salary in 5 years as long as he keeps working and gaining experience.

So in the short term it makes sense for one of us not to work, but in the long term it doesn't because we'll be better off.

SittingAround1 Wed 11-Jan-17 11:21:08

The advantage if you go back now would be to build up experience & get a good reference in order to eventually change jobs to a higher salary ( as you say this one doesn't offer a future pay increase).

Would you be able to do any training as part of this job?
I think if it's possible it's always good to keep one foot in the door with work as you never know - not just splitting up with partner but if he gets made redundant/ ill etc.
Would your partner be able to take on more household tasks?

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