We’re Underestimating Value of Stay-at-home Parents

11th August 2016

Posted In: WMB Living | FYI

Royal London, a protection specialist, asked 1,000 men and women of all ages throughout Ireland how much, in monetary value, they believe that a stay-at-home parent is worth?

Reporting on the findings, Joe Charles from Royal London said, “While it seems many people recognise the very hard work that stay-at-home parents carry out, our survey reveals that they underestimate its value, in terms of the associated cost. The majority (71%) of respondents believe the cost of the stay-at-home parent amounts to €30,000 or less. However, Royal London calculated that the cost would be somewhere around the €42,000 mark.”

Royal London considered the duties of a stay-at-home parent and estimated the cost of replacing the jobs they do for the family and in the home. They included some of the ‘top jobs’ parents carry out on a weekly basis such as cooking, cleaning, driving children to their various activities and so on, and the average workplace costs associated with these duties.

Royal London’s calculations revealed the cost to employ someone to do the household jobs normally done by a stay-at-home parent would be at least €42,000 or more. This is over a third more than what the majority of the Irish public think it costs. Encouragingly though, 29% of respondents said they thought it would be €40,000 or higher.

CSO figures reveal the steady decline of stay-at-home parents. According to the report, in 1986 there were 653,843 people in this category whereas in 2011 there were 339,918 who fell into this group. Of the 339,918 people, it’s estimated that at least 230,000 have children. The number of women working in the home is also down, from 653,398 in 1986 to 321,878 in 2011. However, the number of men who ‘look after the home’ full-time has risen steadily from 445 in 1986 to 18,040 in 2011.