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How the hell do I afford to go back to work?

(23 Posts)
AnxietyStrikes Wed 29-Nov-17 17:14:45

Hi, dd is 5 months and I was planning on going back to work 3 days a week in april. I knew nursery was expensive but I didn't quite do the sums and know I have I'm really shocked and don't think we can actually afford it!!!
After dh paying mortgage and all bills and his car it's my wage that would pay for the childcare and food.

After paying childcare, a few things like phone bill credit card ect there is nothing left.

How the he'll do people afford it?

Now I'm thinking it might not make sense to go back to work at all???? I'm really stuck.

QforCucumber Wed 29-Nov-17 17:16:54

Have you looked into the tax free childcare account or childcare vouchers? We basically worked out that a day rate at nursery where we are is £45. Minus 20% for the tax free childcare so £36. I earn £80 A day, dp £100 a day (ish) Therefore always in profit- even if only slightly.

FacelikeaBagofHammers Wed 29-Nov-17 17:17:35

Some people just go back in order to keep their skills current - it won't always be like this especially as your little one gets older and goes to school. I suppose it depends on whether you love your job and would enjoy going back, and whether that in itself would be enough of an incentive so to speak.

Is your job something you could pick up again in 2 or 3 years time?

Would there be cheaper childcare options at all?

Anatidae Wed 29-Nov-17 17:20:52

It is a trap - because it’s usually the woman who gives up work, and sacrifices her long term earning potential and pension. Even though it’s fanily money.

Think long term - would you be better working for very little to keep a foot on the ladder and your pension contributions up? How strong is your marriage? If it broke down in ten years fine or your other half was too ill to work or died, how would you cope financially? How hard would it be for you to get back into your current job in a few years time?

No easy answers. Staying at home works for some. It can also be a trap that leaves women financially vulnerable for life.

northernruth Wed 29-Nov-17 17:24:13

Please don't stop working. Hang on in there, especially if you have a employer that will let you do 3 days. It's almost impossible to find part time work once you've stopped, unless you are wanting to be a lunchtime assistant at school or work shifts in a call centre. You will get 30 hours free childcare when DS is 3.

Is there any way you can reduce childcare costs? Could you do 4 days? Does your employer (or your partner's) offer childcare vouchers? these take the cost of the childcare out of your pre tax salary - there's a limit to how much you can buy, but from memory you can both buy them. Also look into local childminders - they can be cheaper than nursery and offer a home from home experience for your child. I'm still good friends with my daughter's childminder and my DD is 10 - she was a partner in our family for a few years. I know it's hard, and I don't understand why the govt think working parents only need help from 3 years.

If it helps, think of both you and your DH having responsibility for half of the childcare costs - then you won't feel quite so much like you're working for nothing. And if your wage would cover food and phone bill, then it's not for nothing - would you stop eating if you didn't go back to work?

Katescurios Wed 29-Nov-17 17:28:37

Would you qualify for child tax credits to pay towards nursery?

SandLand Wed 29-Nov-17 17:30:33

If your salary is enough to pay for childcare plus some other bills, how will you pay those other bills if you don't go back?

megletthesecond Wed 29-Nov-17 17:31:24

Play the long game and go back, especially if they'll let you do three days.

You'll keep your skills up to date, your cv will have recent experience, childcare coats will drop a bit when your dd turns 3 and you probably have a pension too. And like Anat said it gives you some security.

Better to take the financial hit now than drop out of the work force for 5 years. It's not easy to jump back in, especially if you want part time hours.

WhatevaPeeps Wed 29-Nov-17 17:32:03

Yes, depressing isn’t it? However if you are breaking even, and you like work I would encourage you to stick at it cos in only hmm a couple of short years the costs will drop, you’ll hopefully get a pay rise, and you’ll be grateful you kept in the job market. At least I did, and now I have friends who stopped working for a variety of reasons some of whom really wish they hadn’t as they can’t get back in. Personal choice, but that’s my perspective

jelliebelly Wed 29-Nov-17 17:35:44

You need to look at finances on a combined basis rather than dh salary covers this and mine covers that. If you opt out of work now you will struggle to ever get back into it. We managed by waiting until we were older and earning more before having kids but obviously not the answer for all!

AnxietyStrikes Wed 29-Nov-17 17:35:59

We are in this annoying bracket where we earn too little to be able to survive as we are but too much to qualify for any help at all.

I suppose massive cut backs will have to made.

It doesn't help that I hate my job and the thought of going back is filling me with dread. But then again being out of work also scares me a bit.

I'm just completely confused about what to do!

Before dd was born dh was in line for a big pay rise so I didn't really think too much of it but then the job he was supposed to be being promoted too fell through and he is still on a pretty low wage.

GemmaB78 Wed 29-Nov-17 17:36:09

I'd suck it up for the same reasons that others state. Also, don't forget pension contributions as well, not to mention NI.

I've just started a new job. We have a 2 year old, and I'm working 4 days a week. The childcare does suck up a lot of my salary, but the benefits to my CV and future career prospects are worth it. We get the 30 hours funded from September next year which will make a huge difference. So for now, we suck it up.

Bobbybobbins Wed 29-Nov-17 17:51:40

I do 3 days a week and the cost in huge. But my eldest is going to school next year and it will start to get easier financially. I also find work gets me out of the house and having adult conversations, so even though it is stressful I think it is good for my mental health. Having recent experience could help you find another job.

PasstheStarmix Fri 01-Dec-17 14:12:43

AnxietyStrikes I understand how you feel because me and my other half are on that same bracket, we get forgotten about in it all don't we?

PasstheStarmix Fri 01-Dec-17 14:54:59

I'm in the same situation as you andwluld love nothing more than to stay with my baby until he goes to nursery. However I think I'd be too worried about getting a job after afew years out as I understand it destroys your standing in the workplace and pensions etc.

Killerfiller Fri 01-Dec-17 15:01:46

Don't understand why you didn't plan this in advance? You had nine months of pregnancy and I'm assuming you discussed this with your partner when you spoke about getting pregnant?

Surely that's what a normal adult person would do.

Are you looking for justification to not go back ?

If so fine you have it. confused

lightcola Fri 01-Dec-17 15:04:37

Go back to work. Being a SAHM is tough and once you’re out of the working game it’s harder to get back in again. You’ll be glad you did in a few years time

PasstheStarmix Fri 01-Dec-17 15:06:44

Killerfiller We did discuss it and MIL was going to take care of baby a couple days a week. That fell through due to extenuating circumstances...

PasstheStarmix Fri 01-Dec-17 15:08:10

Thanks lightcola I do think that will be my decision as I'm questioning staying at home way too much to be comfortable. Just the whole pension and being relevant in work place...I have good experience I don't want to lose.

PasstheStarmix Fri 01-Dec-17 15:09:50

Haha sorry baby brain! I thought I was posting on my thread and those responses were onviously for OP; guess they could have applied to my similar thread also!!

AnxietyStrikes Sat 02-Dec-17 19:33:43

Killerfiller this was very very planned in advance. As I have mentioned already my partner was in line to get a promotion at work once he had passed his exams and a pay rise which would have meant none of this would have been a problem. Due to no fault of his own this didn't happen and he was only made aware of the fact the promotion was no lo her available the month our baby was due.

Sometimes no matter how much you plan life happens and things don't go the way you thought.

Milkandtwosugarsplease Thu 14-Dec-17 20:01:25

It’s depressing but it’s not forever. For 6 months my wages paid for nursery and left me with £50 a month. It was difficult and demoralising but it meant that I now have a stable job and I work hours that suit me. We now get the 30hrs childcare so it’s easier. Think long term.

NameChanger22 Thu 14-Dec-17 20:05:21

I was really lucky and found a cheap nursery - it still costs a third of my wages, but it's doable. I'm a single parent, I don't claim tax credits. Without the nursery I have no idea what I'd do, I suppose I'd find a cheap childminder or try and find a job which fits in with school hours.

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