Childcare Finance

Are you losing thousands to find childcare?

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Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

Raising children often means relying on childcare. Which might mean you’ll lose money in the process.

Some families are losing between £3,400 and £11,400 in earnings in their struggle to find sufficient childcare. And this causing lost days of work and less cash in the account.

A new analysis from the charity Save the Children estimates that £3.4 million in earnings is lost every day. All because of government childcare that is described as a “nightmare to navigate” by a representative of the charity.

Struggling to survive

Steven McIntosh, director of UK poverty policy for Save the Children, described the current system as producing an, “astounding loss in earnings, hitting families already battling to make ends meet.”

A report by charity said that ‘parents are still facing sky-high childcare bills and struggling with a complicated system – with almost half of parents saying they have no idea or are confused about what support they should get.’

What are your options?

Finding the childcare that’s right for you can be confusing at times. But there are a few options available to parents who need a hand:

  • Childcare Vouchers. The Childcare Voucher scheme is available through some companies, offering an element of tax relief through childcare payments of up to £243 per month but the amount you receive will depend on your earnings and if your company offers this scheme.
  • Childcare Choices. The government offers its own childcare scheme to help you find what’s best for you based on the age of your child, your income and your marital status. This scheme is only run in England. However, similar schemes are run throughout the UK. You can find out more about government run schemes here.
  • Local Gov Schemes. County Councils throughout the country offer their own schemes for two year olds called ‘Free for 2’. This scheme is on offer for parents who receive certain benefits, a full list of which can be found here.