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How could your child’s birth day affect your personal finances? article
How could your child’s birth day affect your personal finances? article

September may be the most popular month to have a baby – but is it also more expensive?

As millions of households struggle with the cost of living crisis, many may be looking for ways to reduce their everyday expenses.

For parents with babies and toddlers attending nursery in the day, childcare costs have also spiralled. One survey by Pregnant Then Screwed has revealed that over a third of mothers (35.5%) who return to work are either making a financial loss or only just breaking even.

The National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA) has put out an urgent call for increased funding as inflation increases the cost of nurseries. Parents have to cope with rising nursery costs, along with energy bills, supermarket prices, mortgage payments and clothing.

In our Nursery Fees Report below, Creditfix has revealed that the current average daily nursery costs are £54.76 – or £276 per week if a child is there full time.

 

What are debt-levels like for parents nationally?

Almost half (47.9%) of Creditfix customers are parents to children under the age of 18. 23.7% of customers seeking debt support have children under the age of five.

The average debt level for parents of children under the age of five is £16,570 – higher than the national average of Creditfix customers at £15,998. Parents with children under the age of 18 also had a higher debt level than average at £17,402.

According to the latest ONS statistics at the time of publishing, the average regular weekly salary is £558.

As inflation surpasses 10% and people struggle to cover their own expenses, the rising cost of living is leading to more and more people needing debt advice and as a result entering a debt solution such as a Debt Relief Order (DRO) or  Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVAs) to take into account their current financial situation and clear any debts they have.

 

How can my child’s birth date affect how much I pay?

According to the ONS, 26 September is the most popular birthday in the UK, with Christmas being the most popular time for conception, and some parents preferring their child to be one of the oldest in their academic year.

However, this means that parents who need to send their child to nursery may have to spend thousands of pounds more in their early years, compared to if their child was born in the summer.

While it’s difficult to be able to time exactly when you do have a child, if you have the luxury of having flexibility in deciding when to conceive, parents who give birth in summer may save financially.

Children born in the summer months such as June, July and August will start school just after they turn four-years-old. However, if your child is born on 1 September, they’ll have to wait almost 12 months after turning four to go to school – which could leave you with a high nursery bill.

While there are some government funding options available, not all nurseries offer funding places or 30-hours free childcare. This has led 61.7% of mothers who return to work deciding to stop working, change jobs or do fewer hours.

 

How much can I expect to save by having a summer baby?

In the Creditfix Nursery Fees Report, we have conducted research across the day rates of ten nurseries in each of the 100 largest cities and towns in the UK.

This has painted a clear picture of the national childcare cost crisis. If your little one is born on 1 September, parents in the UK could be spending an extra £13,909 per year to foot the bill for nursery costs – as opposed to £876.22 if they’re born on 1 August.

The research is based on the assumption that your child goes to nursery full-time on every working day of the year, not including bank holidays or weekends.

The average amount of money parents are likely to spend on nursery fees depending on when their child is born:

 

Average nursery day rate across the UK £54.76
Extra cost for child born 1 September £13,909.16
Extra cost for child born 1 October £12,702.42
Extra cost for child born 1 November £11,627.90
Extra cost for child born 1 December £10,352.28
Extra cost for child born 1 January £9,145.42
Extra cost for child born 1 February £7,928.96
Extra cost for child born 1 March £6,845.37
Extra cost for child born 1 April £5,585.82
Extra cost for child born 1 May £4,498.60
Extra cost for child born 1 June £3,230.06
Extra cost for child born 1 July £2,026.13
Extra cost for child born 1 August £876.22

 

What does this picture look like regionally?

Harrow, in Greater London, had the highest day rate for nurseries across the UK on average. Parents in the borough are paying an average of £85.17 per day. If a child in Harrow were to go to nursery every working day of the year, parents with children born in September can be expected to pay up to £21,457 extra over the course of the year.

This is almost £12,000 more than St Helens in Merseyside, where a parent with a child born on 1 September would pay an average of £9,626.60 extra.

Other geographic areas in the UK where residents can be expected to pay higher fees include Stevenage, Woking, High Wycombe and Bristol.

Southern areas dominated the list of most expensive, with the only exceptions being two cities outside of England – Aberdeen and Belfast.

Conversely, the cheapest nurseries overall were in the midlands and North of England. St. Helens, Oldham, Middlesbrough, Stoke-on-Trent and Chesterfield had the most affordable nursery rates.

The top 20 most expensive regions for nursery rates in the UK are:

 

Position City/town Average nursery cost per day Average extra cost for September-born child in full-time nursery Average extra cost for August-born child in full time nursery
1 Harrow £85.17 £21,632.67 £1,362.68
2 Stevenage £76.04 £19,312.89 £1,216.56
3 Woking £74.20 £18,846.8 £1,187.20
4 High Wycombe £69.78 £17,724.12 £1,116.48
5 Bristol £67.52 £17,148.81 £1,080.24
6 Maidstone £65.52 £16,642.33 £1,048.33
7 Aberdeen £65.21 £16,564.10 £1,043.40
8 Watford £64.81 £16,461.48 £1,036.90
9 Slough £64.19 £16,304.26 £1,027.04
10 Swindon £63.83 £16,211.55 £1,021.20
11 Basingstoke £63.46 £16,118.84 £1,015.36
12 Crawley £63.31 £16,081.50 £1,013.00
13 Bedford £62.50 £15,875.50 £1,000.00
14 Chelmsford £62.30 £15,825.20 £996.86
15 Oxford £62.10 £15,773.14 £993.68
16 Cheltenham £61.90 £15,721.83 £990.35
17 Belfast £61.49 £15,618.46 £983.84
18 Reading £61.44 £15,604.74 £982.97
19 Brighton £60.75 £15,431.51 £972.06
20 Southend-on-Sea £60.62 £15,396.21 £969.84

 

 

In Scotland, the picture is slightly different

In Scotland, the oldest children in the school year are born on March 1, meaning that parents who will save the most on nursery fees will be more likely to have a child in February. The average day rate for nurseries in Scotland is £52.78 – and parents who pay for full-time nursery care can expect to spend up to £13,407 extra if their child is born in March.

Of the cities analysed, Aberdeen had the highest fees at £65.21 per day, while Glasgow was the most affordable at £45.10.

 

Calculator – how much can I expect to save?

We’ve created a calculator tool if you’re wondering how much extra you could expect to spend depending on when your child is born.

Simply click on your location and proposed birth date below:

Childcare Calculator

With our calculation tool you can easily see the costs for the childcare you need.

What city do you live in?

When was your child born?

Your childcare estimate:

8,617.76

PER YEAR

Start again
 

These figures come on the back of new statistics by Ofsted, which has revealed that the cost of living crisis is also affecting nurseries – with 4,000 fewer childcare providers in March 2022 compared to March 2021. Some council-run centres are being closed, while others are unable to open due to not being able to find sufficient staff.

 

If you’re concerned about the cost of childcare

You may be able to secure 30-hours free childcare per week, depending on the childcare provider and your eligibility. Find out more on the government website.

If you’re struggling to pay your bills, you may consider looking into a formal debt solution, such as IVAs and a Debt Management Plan.

If you’re in debt and you need more information about the options available, you can always speak confidentially with one of our friendly advisors on 0800 118 4815

 

 

Methodology

Creditfix sampled ten day nurseries in each of the 100 largest towns and cities. Population data was taken from The Geographist.

Creditfix then created an average of each area to establish the most expensive areas in the UK. We then created a formula to establish how much extra it would cost to send your child to nursery for each academic month before the school year begins. This does not include weekends or bank holidays.

Nurseries analysed include council-backed and private nurseries, to give a clear overall picture of nursery rates in the UK.

Parent debt levels are taken from Creditfix, and are based on the debt levels of 143,304 customers. Data correct as of 1 September 2022.

Maxine McCreadie

Maxine is an experienced writer, specialising in personal insolvency. With a wealth of experience in the finance industry, she has written extensively on the subject of Individual Voluntary Arrangements, Protected Trust Deed’s, and various other debt solutions.

How we reviewed this article:

HISTORY

Our debt experts, and insolvency practitioners continually monitor the personal finance and debt industry, and we update our articles when new information becomes available.

Current Version

September 6 2022

Written by
Maxine McCreadie

Edited by
Maxine McCreadie