As a parent I only want what's best for my children, whether that be a warm meal each night, clean clothes each day or new toys to play with. But being a parent is very costly, especially as a single mother of two. The average cost of raising a child from birth until they leave home is an astonishing £230,000 with the cost of living going up each year it's easy to see how many parents struggle in this day and age.
Before your child is even born you'll have a list as long as your arm of costly items to buy ranging from moses baskets to car seats and pushchairs, then they need new clothes every few months as they grow so quickly, nappies alone cost on average £500 a year then you have milk and food to buy too. When they get older you may have childcare to take into account too which is extremely expensive.
Thousands of families end up being separated each year and many aren't receiving child maintenance payments which they are entitled to, which is why financial advisors PayPlan have launched a campaign and resource hub to help parents avoid missing out. A study revealed that over a fifth of single parents aren't receiving any child maintenance support even though they qualify for it, with 58.6% admitting they did not know if they were eligible for a statutory arrangement or not. Based on the basic weekly rate of £41 a week which can be claimed for Child Maintenance, single parents could be missing out on £2132 a year!
I'm very lucky in the fact that myself and the kids dad get on very well and are on good terms so we have a mutual "family based arrangement", however many single parents aren't so lucky.
The brand new resource hub is designed to help single parents navigate the UK's child maintenance process which they created after finding that over a fifth of single parents in the UK are not receiving child maintenance payments despite qualifying for them. The hub contains four key tools which are designed to educate parents on the different payments available and help navigate them through the process.
- The Child Maintenance Process – This is a straight forward downloadable guide about how the process works, explaining the details of both family and statutory arrangements.
- Child Maintenance Calculator – A tool to help you decide which arrangement is best suited for your circumstances.
- The Cost of Raising a Child – A fun interactive slider to help understand the costs associated with raising a child.
- Child Maintenance Research Report – This is a document filled with research findings from PayPlan’s latest survey on Child Maintenance
PayPlan who have spent over 20 years helping people deal with their debts and get on with living their life hope that the hub will encourage people to seek help if they are struggling to claim child maintenance that they are entitled to.
You can take a look at the hub here.
Are you a single parent? Are you getting the help that you're entitled to?