Q, I bring home $2,800 a month, and my husband stays home with our two daughters – one 3, the other 3 months. He’s healthy and able, but he won’t work because he thinks he can’t make enough money to cover the cost of daycare. Our rent is $1,000 a month, and our other bills add up to about $2,000 a month. What do you think about this, and when is it OK to avoid daycare expenses by not working?
A. I’m an old-school guy, a crusty old dinosaur about some things. I grew up in a generation where a guy who did this kind of thing was called a wuss, or worse; not because he’s staying home with the kids, but because he’s staying at home while you guys can’t pay the bills!
I’m all about family togetherness, and with spending as much time with your children as possible, and I don’t have a problem with guys being stay-at-home dads as long as the family is in agreement and can afford to do that kind of thing. But if you’re just scraping by, or can’t meet your financial obligations, which seems to be true with you guys, that’s a different story.
This guy needs to get off his butt, fulfill his responsibilities as a man and a husband, and find a way to start taking care of his family! — Dave
Come on Dave, you havent been checking your math. Daycare alone for two kids one being a 3 month old comes pretty close to a weeks salary. In fact at-home dad David Chapa of Downers Grove, ILL did all the dirty work on this topic and came up with these figures that I used in my book.
"Put together a simple spreadsheet. Daycare for two kids, nine hours a day at, what, $10 an hour? That’s $450 a week, times, say 50 weeks in a work year. That amounted to $22,500. OK, now you need a more dependable car for work. $350 a month, plus additional insurance, plus the extra gas (not even getting into wear and tear depreciation). That ends up to be about $5k a year. Dress business clothes? Another $1,000 a year. Lunch at work? Even if you only spend $3 a day extra, that’s $750 a year. According to my calculations, that’s about $29,000. Not to mention additional medical expenses, sick days, and all of the other "throw your kids in daycare" costs. But wait, there’s more! If you’re spending $29,000, just to go to work, you need to make another $11k, just to pay the federal, state, and local taxes to bring home $29,000. ($40,000 per year, taxed at .28% = $28,800 take home). So, it costs around $40,000 in pre-tax dollars, just to break even, when sending two kids into childcare, just so you can "go to work." As always, your mileage may vary. Then, add in the social expense of having your children raised by strangers.
I feel sorry for this mom, I just hope she or her husband knows how to add before taking this advice. I'll send this post to him and see if he could pass on some more reasonable advice.
As a disclaimer David Ramsey Says on his website. Our mission statement isn’t just lip service; it’s our mantra: The Lampo Group, Inc. is providing Biblically based, common sense education and empowerment which gives HOPE to everyone from the financially secure to the financially distressed.
[ref: Man Up!]