The price of childcare keeps going up, up, up, says new research from the Childcare Cost Survey 2015.
The 'Childcare Cost Survey 2015' reinforces the message that many parents are all-too-well aware of - the cost of childcare just keeps on increasing to staggering levels.
The cost of a part-time nursery place for a child under two has increased by an inflation-busting 33 per cent over the course of this Parliament, according to new research by the Family and Childcare Trust.
Overall, the cost for all types of childcare for under-fives has risen by at least 27 per cent in the last Parliament.
Nursery places have broken through the £6,000-a-year barrier
Nursery places have broken through the £6,000-a-year barrier, averaging £115.45 per week across Britain - a rise of more than 5% in just one year.
Part-time childminder costs have also risen by more than 4% in the past year, to an average of £104.06 per week.
Stephen Dunmore, chief executive at the Family and Childcare Trust said: “During this Parliament we have welcomed extra support for parents through the new tax free voucher scheme and a commitment to raise the amount of childcare support in Universal Credit.
“But, if childcare costs continue to rise at this pace, the benefits of this new financial support to parents will be quickly eroded within the next Parliament.
“In spite of several positive initiatives, including more funding for free early education, the childcare system in Britain needs radical reform. In the run-up to the general election this May we want to see all political parties commit to an independent review of childcare. Britain needs a simple system that promotes quality, supports parents and delivers for children.”
Iain McMath, CEO of Sodexo Benefits and Rewards Services, the leading provider of childcare vouchers in the UK, also commented: “Parents are being forced to make drastic decisions regarding their finances and employment. The rise in childcare costs outstrips inflation and regularly exceeds mortgage expenditure as the biggest strain on family income.
“It’s a situation that threatens not only household budgets, but also the wider economy”
“It’s a situation that threatens not only household budgets, but also the wider economy, since it pushes many parents towards abandoning work and staying at home.
“The government has taken steps to address this problem by holding a childcare consultation to determine how childcare vouchers will be offered after the 2015 election. Existing employer-led childcare voucher schemes can currently save each parent up to £933 per year, contributing £1,866 to a family when both parents are working. On the other hand, the proposed Tax-Free Childcare Scheme is designed to save parents up to £2,000 per year, but in reality the average saving has been estimated at just £600. Therefore, for many parents, the incentive will be to start receiving childcare vouchers before the current cut off point in autumn 2015.
“Regardless of what scheme the government offers after the upcoming election, the good news is that childcare vouchers are still available for children up to the age of 15. As such, parents that sign up for vouchers now will have the option to stay on the current scheme and continue receiving vouchers, even when a new scheme may start.”