Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Grandparents helping out with childcare - it's worth more than you might think!

Did you rely on grandparents to help out with your children over the summer holidays? A new study commissioned by comfort furniture specialist HSL Chairs has revealed that the average UK grandparent puts in 600 hours of work over the summer holidays, work which if they were to be paid would be worth an incredible £22, 043!

It's not just basic childcare that is included of course, it's all the extras like cooking meals, driving children around to their various activities, providing entertainment, helping with washing and dressing, and of course sorting out emotional problems as well as squabbles and disputes. But even though the grandparents questioned admitted that it was hard work, leaving 35% emotionally drained and 57% physically exhausted, more than a third named looking after their children as the most satisfying job of all, with 40% recognising that looking after their grandchildren keeps them fit and active. More than half even admitted that they avoided taking their own trips away during the school holidays so that they would be around to help if they were needed.

The main reasons that grandparents helped out with the childcare were because they wanted to make their children's lives easier (60%) and to help their children save some money (35%). But 21% did admit that they felt guilty if they were not able to help look after their grandchildren. 

We are very lucky in that we don't need to rely on childcare over the school holidays, although I'm always very grateful if either set of grandparents are able to take the children out for a bit and give me a break (and I like to think that they enjoy spending time with the children too!). 

We did however rely on my parents for some extra childcare when my oldest was very young, and it made things a lot easier for us - along with saving us money it also meant that he could spend a day with familiar faces rather than at his nursery. I'd be reluctant though to rely on either set of parents for a long-term arrangement, because I know that not only is it hard work, I want them to be able to relax and enjoy their retirement doing the things that they want to do without any commitment!

The infographic  below gives a regional breakdown of the UK's hardest working grandparents. HSL Chairs have also created a fun app which grandparents can use to work out just how much they would be paid if they were charging a realistic wage for their services! You can find the app here - Grandparents Summer Salary Calculator.

Infographic - Grandparents helping out with childcare

This is a sponsored post in association with HSL Chairs.

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