How We Became A Single Income Family
Given the astronomical cost of daycare these days, I would imagine that our path to single incomehood is similar to many other families. Right around the time my husband and I started thinking about having a second child, we realized that the cost of daycare for two kids was just about equal to Mr. SIL’s take-home pay. Sure enough, after digging into the numbers, our household would net about the same if we pulled him from the workforce vs paying for daycare for both kids. We also looked at the impact on investments and realized that while we would lose out on the contributions that he was making to his 401(k), along with the amount his company matched, we would also save some taxes by lowering our household income. At face value, we were looking at a break-even scenario which made the decision a no-brainer.
Beyond the financial aspect, we knew that our quality of life would improve immensely if we had one parent at home. Not only would we be able to spend more time with the kids, but we would also avoid the stress of managing two work schedules with daycare drop-off/pick-up and sick/inclement weather/holiday schedules. Life has become much more easy-going since Mr. SIL became a stay-at-home dad.
We had also been very good up to that point of stashing Mr. SIL’s paycheck in savings, so we didn’t miss his income once Baby #2 arrived in late 2014. The transition to single incomehood is pretty seamless when you’re accustomed to living on one income anyway. Mr. SIL’s last day on the job was sometime in December 2014, right around the time I returned to work from maternity leave.
Just recently, I did a look-back analysis to see how much income we missed out on during Mr. SIL’s first YEAR at home. Here’s where we landed:
I’m gonna go ahead and call that break-even. We didn’t miss the extra 64 bucks a week and given the choice to have one parent at home or have two working parents, the choice was easy for this single income family.