Struggling with Child Care Costs?You're not alone!
The Need for Child Care
If you’re raising kids, there’s a good chance you’re aware of how expensive child care can be. Even so, that doesn’t stop it from being a necessity. The good news is that there are resources that might be able to help!
The Costs of Child Care
At what point is child care affordable? Federal guidelines define affordable care for a single infant as costing 7% or less of an average, two-parent family’s income. Throughout every state and DC, the actual costs are higher than this guideline. And, adding a second child only amplifies the issue.
If you’re a single parent, the reality might be even harsher. In New Hampshire, you could end up paying nearly 40% of your income for infant care at a center. This is a far cry from affordable!
So, if there’s such a gap between what’s affordable and reality, what can you do?
Ways to Get Help
Fortunately, the Department of Health and Human Services provide State Childcare Assistance. You can visit the DHHS website to find out more about the program. In broad strokes the less your family earns and the more children you have, the more aid you might qualify for.
Try out the DHHS’s questionnaire to see how much aid you might qualify for. The questions are simple and it’s confidential. Just keep in mind that you’ll still have to go through the application process.
You can check out Child Care Aware’s website for resources that can help you find the right child care provider. They have a search tool that can help you find providers near you. And they have a list of questions and considerations to help you find a good fit.
One of the keys to avoiding a crisis that might send your family into a downward financial spiral over child care costs is to take these pro-active steps: reach out for assistance if you think you need it and ask for guidance when making decisions. In many cases, help is available!