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Stay-at-home parents do £30K of unpaid work

Stay-at-home parents do £30K of unpaid work

Category: Life insurance

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

New research has found that stay-at-home parents do an average of £29,812 of unpaid work per year, and yet almost two-thirds of them don't have any life insurance, creating a potentially dangerous situation if something were to happen to them.

The cost of parenting

When people think of life insurance, they often think of the effect that losing income can have on a family. But the loss of the main child-carer can be just as financially devastating. When you consider what stay-at-home parents, and the main caregiver in general, add to a household, this can add up to quite a lot.

The total figure of unpaid work has been made up of the 56 hours and 36 minutes on average spent being a chef, cleaner, nurse, taxi-driver, teacher, and doing laundry as well as performing general childcare duties. These are all jobs that someone would have to take on or get paid for should something happen to the main caregiver.

Even mums or dads that work part-time bring in an additional £26,241 worth of unpaid work per year, totalling up to 48 hours and 24 minutes. These figures come from SunLife Protection, whose director, Mark Jones, commented: "If you work part time or you're a stay-at-home parent and don't earn a salary, it's easy to think you don't need life insurance. But the fact is, if something happened to you, your partner may have to reduce their working hours to look after your children, or pay someone else to do all the roles you do – and that's not cheap."

Are you covered?

With more than two in five mums not having life insurance, this is an important conversation to have with your partner, and you shouldn't put it off. Most parents choose term life insurance, which means you would be covered during the time that your little ones rely on you the most, for example for a 20-year term that covers their entire childhood. For more information on the type of life insurance policies that are available, read our guides.

According to SunLife, those that do have life insurance have a policy worth £120,437 on average, dropping to £106,152 for stay-at-home mums. While this would cover the average outstanding mortgage of £85,000 and average household debt of £8,000, it doesn't take into account the average household spending of £531 a week and does not consider university fees or a funeral (£3,897). And of course it does not factor in the average 'caregiver value' of £26,241.

So even if you have a life insurance policy already, you could always use our no-obligation comparison service to see if you could do better. Even if you aren't earning any income, never forget that you are important!

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.