The amounts of money being spent each month by parents across Scotland has increased by as much as 28 per cent over the course of just the last three years.
That’s according to research carried out recently by YouGov on behalf of Bank of Scotland, which has highlighted some of the financial pressures that parents throughout the country are increasingly under.
As recently as 2016, the average amount of money spent by parents on having their children cared for was £216 per month, with the equivalent figure now standing at £276 per month.
Looking at those numbers on an annualised basis, Scottish parents are paying out £720 extra on average for childcare now than they would have been just three years ago in the same situation.
An obvious side effect of the growing costs involved with having your children looked after is that families are finding themselves short of cash and potentially more reliant on debt.
For a lot of parents, rising childcare costs mean that they have little choice but to ask their children’s grandparents to look after them on a routine basis while they’re out at work.
According to Bank of Scotland’s research, the proportion of grandparents who provide 20 or more hours of childcare each week has increased from 9 per cent to 15 per cent since 2016.
Three years ago, the average amount of childcare time committed by grandparents across Scotland was around 8 hours per week but now that figure is up to 9.3 hours.
More is generally asked of grandparents in terms of providing childcare during the school summer holidays and, remarkably, around 6 per cent of parents now ask their own grandparents (their children’s great-grandparents) to provide support when they can.
“The cost of childcare can be a major financial burden for parents, particularly during times when their kids are on holiday,” commented Ricky Diggings, a director at Bank of Scotland.
“While most grandparents are more than happy to help out and enjoy spending time with their grandchildren, the financial benefit this also provides to families should not be underestimated.”
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