For many parents, dealing with childcare costs can cause a lot of unnecessary worry and stress. With expensive prices and upfront payments, these fees can cut a huge chunk out of your income and put financial strain on other areas, such as bills or rent. Whether you work full time or not at all, have a partner or are parenting solo, there are a few ways you can deal with upfront costs for childcare and minimise stress in this area.
One of the easiest ways to deal with childcare costs is to think and plan ahead of time. This could mean setting up a savings account before your child reaches nursery age (or even before they are born) and putting away a little bit each month.
Of course, it isn’t always within our means to plan ahead like this. If you don’t have a savings account set up or enough disposable income to start one, there’s no need to panic. Whilst childcare can be expensive, there is help available to ensure you don’t struggle.
There are various ways the government can help with childcare costs, ensuring your child gets the early education or childcare they are entitled to.
15 or 30 hours free childcare
Children in the UK aged 3-4 are entitled to some hours of free childcare or early education, such as nurseries, playgroups and pre-school. The amount you earn and work will effect how many hours you can claim, so check your eligibility on the government website. Make the most of this as you could be entitled to up to 30 hours a week, which can make a huge difference.
If you are in paid work, then universal credit can help pay for your childcare costs, potentially taking a lot of the pressure off. You will have to pay the upfront costs yourself, however if you keep your receipts you could receive up to 85% of the costs back in monthly reimbursements depending on your eligibility.
If you are a working parent with children under 12 years, tax-free childcare is a government scheme that could be useful to you. This scheme can help you pay for childcare such as nurseries, child minders, nannies and after school clubs. If you are eligible you can get 20% off your childcare costs. You open an account and then for every 80p you pay, the government will pay 20p, up to a maximum of £2000 per year. You can check eligibility on the government website.
Ask for a payment plan
Whatever childcare service you are looking at, if you’re worried about the costs, speak to a member of staff to find out whether there is any way around it. They may be able to split your fee into instalments you can budget for, rather than expecting a lump sum. Or they may be able to give you extra time to find the money without having to delay your child’s education. It’s always worth asking for help when you need it rather than struggling in silence.
At Morses Club, we understand that feeling out of control when it comes to money can be tough. We offer small cash loans to help with those unexpected costs. Our loans aren’t right for everyone and you should only borrow what you can afford to pay back. If you would like to find out if a Morses Club cash loan is right for you then read our FAQs for more information.