Now, the start of the school year brings additional financial burdens, with more than half (51%) of parents of children under 18 saying they are facing additional financial problems this year due to the pandemic.
“Parents are forced to make financial decisions that were not part of their plan before the pandemic struck,” said Troy frerichs, Vice President of Investment Services at COUNTRY Financial. “Now they are faced with the possibility of quitting a job or reducing their working hours at home school or helping their children with distance learning, which can have a major financial impact on their lives. household. Now is the time for parents to reassess their financial goals and create a new game plan that takes into account changes in their income as well as new expenses. “
Parents assume additional expenses during the unique back-to-school season
Parents experienced more financial stress during the pandemic, with nearly a quarter of parents surveyed (22%) saying COVID-19 had an impact on their ability to pay bills, compared to 12% of non-parents. In addition, since the start of the pandemic, parents are more likely than non-parents to delay paying rent, credit card bills, car insurance bills and pension contributions, 27% of parents expected to delay at least one of these payments compared to 17 percent of non-parents.
The atypical back-to-school season exacerbates these financial stressors, creating additional expenses for parents – especially parents of children who are distance learning this fall.
The survey found that the top financial concerns for parents as their children head back to school include rising food costs (26%), the cost of new technologies and internet services (21%) and an increase in childcare costs (13%). Parents estimate they will spend up to $ 500 per month (68%) to cover these costs.
One-third of parents (34 percent) whose children attend school virtually this fall are concerned about the cost of food, compared to just 19 percent of parents whose children attend school in person. Those who attend hybrid school (28%) or home school (31%) are more concerned about purchasing new technology or equipment than those who attend school in person (15%).
Meanwhile, parents of children under 10 are much more worried about rising childcare costs (19%) and having to change or reduce their hours to care for their children ( 18%). In addition, parents of children under five fear losing their jobs due to performance issues due to a lack of child care (13%).
“With schools and local governments deciding whether our children will learn in person or virtually this fall, it’s easy for parents to feel like they’ve lost control and can’t keep up financially with all the disruptions to their plans. . “continued Frerichs.” My challenge for parents is to sit down and create a new plan that meets their most important needs, such as managing day-to-day cash flow and day-to-day expenses first, then protection such as insurance and long-term savings such as retirement or college. fund. ”
Parents of adult children also experience financial hardship
In addition to parents of school-aged children, parents of children 18 and over are also feeling additional financial burdens due to the changes brought about by the pandemic.
The survey found that one in five parents (21%) with one or more college-aged children saw their child return to live with them during the pandemic. Parents have also had to help their adult children with a variety of different expenses, with 50 percent of parents helping their adult children with daily expenses, including their cell phone, gas or grocery bills, 21 percent helping to pay for health care costs and 11% helping to pay rent or mortgage expenses.
While some parents may have financially supported their adult children before the pandemic, 35 percent of parents of adult children report providing a moderate amount of Additional financial support for their children during the pandemic compared to before.
“For adult children facing new financial challenges as a result of the pandemic, there is no shame in moving to save money – in fact, for some, it might be the best financial strategy.” , said Frerichs. “However, parents need to make sure that by taking on additional expenses for their adult children, they don’t lose sight of their own long-term goals, such as retirement. It is especially important to set limits and expectations because parents help their grown children get back to their feet during a difficult time. ”
To learn more, visit countryfinancial.com.
About the COUNTRY Financial Security Index®
Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has been measuring how Americans feel about their personal financial security. The Index also delves into personal finance topics to better educate Americans about issues affecting their finances. View past surveys in the COUNTRY Financial Security Index Newsroom.
The COUNTRY Financial Security Index was created by COUNTRY Financial and is compiled by Ipsos, an independent research firm. Surveys were conducted using the Ipsos KnowledgePanel®, a national probability-based panel designed to be representative of the general population and includes responses from approximately 1,330 American adults for national surveys. The margin of sampling error for a survey based on this number of interviews is approximately +/- 2.71 percentage points with a 95% confidence level.
About COUNTRY Financial®
The Financial COUNTRY®group (www.countryfinancial.com) serves approximately one million homes and businesses in the United States. It offers a wide range of financial products and services ranging from auto, home, business and life insurance to retirement planning, investment management and annuity services.
Visit COUNTRY Financial on Twitter @HelloCountry, on Facebook @COUNTRYFinancial and on Instagram @countryfinancial.
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SOURCE COUNTRY Financial