Being a single mother is tough as not only the burden of finances falls on to your shoulders but also the challenge of providing an excellent upbringing to your child. According to a report, two-third of children living in single-parent families are living in an impoverished state. Although there are various grants available, their financial condition is not good enough.
As a single mother, you need to assess your financial situation to make sure that you are on top of your expenses. Expenses quickly add up if your child is very young. More often than not, you are told to make a budget to stay ahead of your costs, but that cannot be enough if you are unemployed and relying on child maintenance support.
Contributing to child maintenance is a legal responsibility. You can have an agreement between you and your partner on how much he will fund the needs of your child. Although child maintenance support is an option, it cannot be sufficient to fund all your needs. Here are some of the support schemes that can help you financially.
Apply for council tax reduction
You are eligible to apply for a local council tax reduction if you are living on low wages or unemployed. If your children are under 8, you are likely to get 25% off your council tax. You qualify for the reduction in taxes even if you rent a home. It can be reduced up to 100% depending on the various factors like:
- Where you live
- Your income, the number of children
- Whether your children live with you
- Whether other adults live with you
Go to the website of the local council to get more information.
The UK government provides child benefits to meet the cost of your children. You can claim child benefits regardless of your income status if you are responsible for your child, and they are under 16. You can get these benefits even if your child is between 16 and 20 but still in education.
If you meet these conditions, you will get £20.70 a week for your first child and £13.70 a week for any subsequent child. Child benefits are tax-free as long as you and your partner are earning less than £50,000 annually. Otherwise, you will have to pay back some amount in the form of income tax.
Universal credit is a type of payment that helps you meet the living cost. This payment can replace other benefits like housing benefit, income support, child tax benefits, and the like. You are eligible for universal credit only if you are on a low income and you and your partner have savings not more than £16,000. However, there are other conditions as well to be eligible for universal credit.
30-hour free childcare support
30-hour free childcare support is exclusively available for working mothers if your child is 3 to 4-years-old. The idea to initiate this scheme was to support mothers who want to get back to employment but cannot because of childcare. The eligibility depends on the amount you earn, your child’s circumstances and nationality.
Emergency cash loans
Although there are various benefits you can get to fund your needs, you may still face a shortage of cash. Living as a single mother can be financially challenging. If you are an unemployed single mother, it will be more complicated to be on top of your expenses. Thankfully, some direct lenders provide emergency cash for unemployed single mothers in the UK. However, you will need to show your repaying capacity to get the loan signed off on. Any investment, rental income or benefits can serve as your income.
While applying for emergency cash loans, make sure that you can afford to pay off the loan. Use online calculators to know the total cost of your loan. Make a budget to see if there is enough room to arrange money to pay back the loan.
Living as a single mother in the UK is undoubtedly tough, but the government is providing several benefits to offer a good life to your child. You become entitled to get benefits as soon as you conceive. You will be able to get free prescriptions, dental treatment and other benefits until your baby is one-year-old. Do not delay. Apply for the benefits today.