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Article: Childcare Affordability Report

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A new piece of research has recently been commissioned by FamilyNest which deals closely with family budgeting and childcare in the UK, and has been designed to illustrate the disparity in affordability in different areas of the country, highlighting how the rising cost of childcare in Great Britain is making it increasingly difficult for parents to afford to go back to work. The basis of the research has been to identify what proportion of parents’ wages is spent on childcare per year.

As mums and dads, FamilyNest understand the ever increasing strain UK household budgets are under and are looking to support parents in understanding what the options are available for them and their families and how they can access the resources available to them.

The Working Families Childcare Affordability Report was released on the 25th June and highlights the most affordable places in Britain to raise a child based on income versus the cost of childcare. Information on childcare costs was collected from 124 local authorities across Britain. In order to establish the average earnings across the different regions, data was taken from the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) produced by the Office for National Statistics. The Survey reflects earnings data for males and females – both full time and part time – across local authority areas in Britain.

The report measures the annual cost of 25 hours of care per week and highlights the proportion of average earnings these costs represent. The local authority data on care costs and regional earnings data was mapped against every county in the country. To give the data additional local relevance, information was plotted against 150 urban areas, to show local variations within the counties and give parents a reference point for the affordability measure.

The results highlighted in summary:

  • Stoke is the most affordable location in Great Britain for childcare.
  • In Great Britain today, a parent paying for 25 hours of childcare a week can expect to pay almost £5,000 over the course of year, a figure which is equivalent to 18.9% of average annual earnings.
  • Childcare costs relative to earnings were found to be least affordable in Ebbw Vale, South Wales.

A full press release of the findings can be found by clicking here.

FamilyNest have also created a free calculator tool that offers parents the opportunity to see how far their income goes in terms of childcare and where the best place in the UK would be for them to raise a child based on this information. Try it out here.

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