RAISING A CHILD IS COSTLY–THIS IS HOW PARENTS CAN CUT BACK ON CHILDCARE EXPENSES
Statistics show that the cost of raising a child has consistently risen over the decades. In fact, the average American household reportedly spends $233,610 on each kid starting from birth until they reach the age of 17. A good portion of this amount goes towards childcare costs, which also happens to be one of the most expensive things a family spends its income on.
And with the rising cost of this necessary expense, it’s no wonder that a lot of families are struggling to afford it. Good thing there are many ways parents can cut corners by doing the following things.
KNOW YOUR CHILDCARE OPTIONS
First, moms and dads are encouraged to consider all the childcare options they can afford. In general, most people can choose from hiring a nanny, an au pair or putting their child in a nursery or daycare.
To make a final decision, one should consider factors like the budget, the child’s interests, and one’s free days in a week. Both nannies and au pairs can work and live with the family of the kid they’re looking after. The two differ in the sense that au pairs are foreigners who come to a country to learn about its language and culture while working.
For parents on a tight budget, going for the nanny or parent sharing route with a trusted friend or neighbor might be worth a try. Doing so would not only save both parties money in the long run, but it would also give children the opportunity to socialize with other people their age.
FLEXIBLE WORK HOURS
Some people are lucky to have jobs that allow them to work from home from time to time or have flexible hours. Parents can use this to their advantage by only paying for a nanny or daycare on days when they have to leave the house. For those who work the regular nine to five shifts, it’s worth trying to speak with human resources or a superior about possibly working at different times.
Turning to government assistance is also a way for parents to cut back on childcare expenses. In the United Kingdom, they have something called Tax-Free Childcare, a program which entails the government paying a portion of a family’s childcare expenses. Meanwhile, American parents are entitled to the child and dependent care credit, a tax deduction given to those who pay for childcare expenses.
FREE & AFFORDABLE ACTIVITIES
Availing free and affordable activities is a great choice for parents who want to keep their school-age children occupied and learning over the summer or the winter holiday. One can ask around in their community to find a mix of educational and fun activities for children.