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Commuting and new baby

(19 Posts)
sarahburneraccount35 Mon 29-May-17 10:10:55

First baby due in a few months, live in London in a rental flat and have had an offer accepted on a house which is absolutely lovely. But, suddenly panicking about the commute. It's London suburbs and I'd have a commute of 60 mins door to door on trains (one change). Is this mad with a baby / child? I have a job I love and have worked hard climbing the ranks and I think they'll be reasonably flexible. Partner's commute would be 40 mins some days and 70 others. I know to non-city folk the commute might seem mad but I'm thinking this is normal life for many and will be OK? We could consider moving closer into London but would be in a much smaller home / flat with fewer family friendly amenities. We expect to pay for childcare, such as a childminder or nanny (no family close by) and have budgeted for this. It's hard making such a huge decision on housing before the baby arrives and we know how it feels! Any feedback welcome.

Hmmmwhyisthat Mon 29-May-17 10:14:33

I have exactly the same commute (60 mins, one change).

I don't love it but it's totally manageable. It's a compromise I think is worth making if it means you can buy a house rather than rent a flat.

In a few years I hope to downgrade my career (I don't love my job like you do!) and get a job closer to home, but DH plans on doing that kind of commute until he retires. It's London - what can you do?!

CaulkheadUpNorf Mon 29-May-17 10:17:45

I think a nanny would be your best bet, as then you don't need to be planning to get your baby ready to leave the house and dropping them off into your commute.

motheroreily Mon 29-May-17 10:19:22

I commute 90 mins. I don't love it but it's ok. I also don't have any family close by but have made friends with some other parents.

I had some stressful moments when there were no trains running and I was in London but I survived. Friends helped or Id pay one of the nursery workers to help until I could get back, the nursery manager suggested this so it wasn't dodgy!

Loopytiles Mon 29-May-17 10:20:26

Most people can't afford nannies.

Chewbecca Mon 29-May-17 10:21:24

60mins is a pretty normal to good commute for Londoners IME. Mine is 1 hr 15mins, it is ok.

Do you anticipate doing it 5 days pw? That can get quite tiring. If you are hoping to work PT or have a day or 2 working from home, it will be fine.

CaulkheadUpNorf Mon 29-May-17 10:21:30

Loopytiles the OP has mentioned budgeting for a nanny or childminder...

Chewbecca Mon 29-May-17 10:21:46

(I enjoy the book reading time too)

Loopytiles Mon 29-May-17 10:21:50

60mins is a fairly average London commute, but commuting does impact significantly on working time and energy IME.

Sounds like it's necessary to buy a home of reasonable size. Is the new house "in catchment" for good schools? That would be a key factor for me.

sarahburneraccount35 Mon 29-May-17 10:36:51

Thanks for the replies, I feel reassured that this is normal! Yes I'd hope I could go to 4 days and assuming we keep our current jobs with no disasters, I'd try to stretch for a day nanny for the flexibility. Schools near new house are good and we know of another family there who've had a good experience so far. Just so many big life moments happening at the same time! Lucky but daunting.

Nix32 Mon 29-May-17 10:48:29

It's hard when they're little, because they go to bed early, the older they are the easier it gets. It'll be fine.

Vroomster Mon 29-May-17 16:55:26

I used to do it all the time. It's just normal in London.

WhatwouldRuthdo Mon 29-May-17 17:01:01

I commute 90 mins each way from the suburbs, albeit only 3 days a week. DH's commute is slightly shorter but not a lot. In over 2 years of childcare, we've only been late picking up from nursery once, but it does mean DS does a long day when he is at nursery. It seems fairly standard amongst friends to have a 60 min plus commute if working in London. Only big downside is if DC is ill, it will take you some time to get back to them, but it's not often (hopefully!)

Waggamamma Mon 29-May-17 17:03:53

Not London (Scotland) but I do 60mins door to door by train. It's absolutely fine! 2 children two different sets of childcare.

Although I would not be able to manage drop off and pick up myself (childcare 8am -6pm here), I do drop off and dp does pick up or vice versa. One of starting early and one of us finishing late.

You do need a back up plan though for if trains get delayed and you're going to miss nursery closing (I have a network of family and friends to call on in this situation).

It is tiring though!

sarahburneraccount35 Mon 29-May-17 19:48:09

Thank you - really interesting hearing all your experiences. I guess this is the reality of London and lots of other cities.

Firenight Mon 29-May-17 19:52:15

I do an hour and a half into London. I compress my hours and work from home sometimes too. It's definitely exhausting, especially in winter when the child has had a wakeful night (mine have never slept through) but it's definitely doable. Robust childcare necessary and one of you able to drop everything to pick up in case of illness.

Racheyg Mon 29-May-17 20:10:32

Op, I used to live zone 1/2 before having kids. Now with two dcs we live zone 4. I have a 75 min commute each way. Both kids go to the same nursery which has long hours. I work 3 days a week.

It's fine now but dc1 starts school in September which is going to put a spanner in the works with hours.

I would rather own my own house than rent and live closer in

SlipperyLizard Wed 31-May-17 18:18:35

I do 60 minutes door to door into Manchester, I think in any city the reality is that families tend to live further out, and commute back in.

My train journey is only about 25 mins, but walking either end plus time at the station makes it an hour.

JanetBrown2015 Wed 31-May-17 18:56:33

I did 60 minutes (London) when we both worked full time and at one stage had 3 children under 4. I did that for about 11 years. It's doable. Their father was nearer and he got home by 6pm when our day nanny left (and a nanny looking after 3 in your house is much cheaper than 3 full time nursery places by the way for anyone saying nannies are only for the rich! She doesn't have to have qualifications and Norland uniform.)

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