Maternity leave can be a tremendous financial strain, especially if you are only entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) or Maternity Allowance (MA). Extra money for maternity leave could be a game-changer for you. This could mean the difference between the maternity leave you can afford, and the maternity leave you want.
SMP was all I received during my first maternity leave. £5,000 for the period of my maternity leave. For someone who was used to a much higher salary, that is quite a gap.
These are my top tips to help you get some extra money for maternity leave.
1. Use cashback sites
I remember when a colleague at work introduced me to cashback sites by telling me “it’s free money!”. After hours of listening to me go on about all of the things I had been buying for the baby and asked if I was getting cashback? I said that I had never heard of it!
When you are shopping for items for your baby this is a great way to get some extra money. Provided you are still getting the best deal, all you need to do is visit a cashback site first. However, you might not get the cash instantly. There can be some delays, but it does quickly accumulate into a nice lump sum.
I use Topcashback. There is no other reason other than that is what was recommended to me all of those years ago. Over time I have had well over £1,000 from them for just shopping as usual.
Estimated extra money £50 – £100 per year
2. Sell your baby’s outgrown items
A second way I got extra money during maternity leave was to sell on our outgrown items. As soon as there was a pile of outgrown clothes or equipment, they were out the door.
My top tips for selling secondhand baby items are here.
Estimated extra money £50 – £200 per year
3. Turn your hobby into a business
I never even thought about doing this to help get extra money for my maternity leave. I was too consumed by planning for the baby’s arrival to make money from any of my hobbies. In hindsight, this would have been a great thing to do!
Estimated extra money £50 – £200 per year (I’m sure there is something to be said from doing this)
4. Focus on your pre-maternity savings
When you are so focused on preparing for the baby’s arrival, it can be hard to focus on anything else. When I was expecting my first, I was literally out every lunchtime looking for things for him. I was a bargain-hunting machine. On reflection, if I had of focused my mind and my money on getting a lump sum of cash together, I would have been in a better position.
This is my ten-day micro saving plan. It shows you how some small changes to your money habits can help you achieve big things. While I didn’t do this while preparing for maternity leave, I did it last year in the run-up to Christmas and managed to save several hundred pounds.
Estimated extra money £50+ (your mindset only limits you)
5. Look for online income
A great way to earn extra income is to look for something (legal) you can do online. I am not talking about getting another job, but something flexible, which suits your new lifestyle. You could do loads of things: surveys, blogging, product testing, competitions, and freelance work, to name a few.
If you are worried about getting extra income for maternity leave, go and investigate the possibility of these tips for you.