Nearly a third of new mums go into debt because of maternity leave, suggests a study.
The research by uSwitch.com found that 28% of women surveyed had gone into debt during their time off work, running up debts of almost £2,500. Only a quarter of the women said they felt financially prepared for parenthood and almost one in 10 said they had to reconsider their plans not to head back to work.
More than 1,000 mums took part in the study. The mums said that during maternity leave their net monthly household income went from, on average, £2,866 down to £1,654 typically.
One in 10 said they'd borrowed money from a family member, and 14% had used credit cards, loans and overdrafts. The research found that 11% of mums said they'd ended their maternity leave early due to financial pressures.
"Planning for a baby is tough at the best of times, but in the face of the soaring cost of living there is even more pressure on family finances," said Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch.com.
"It's clear that more needs to be done by the Government to help families cope with the financial burden of parenthood, but in the meantime families can help their situation by reviewing household budgets and looking at where they can cut costs to save a bit of extra cash," Ann explained.
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