Credit Union survey shows marked increase in numbers struggling with Back to School costs
More than three quarters of parents (78%) say the cost of Back to School is a financial burden. This is a significant increase on 67% in 2018. Parents getting children ready for secondary school are spending €1,399 per child. This is up €20 on the €1,379 being spent last year. Parents of primary school children are however spending less; €949 this year compared to €999 last year (€50 decrease). The worrying findings were revealed in the study commissioned by the Irish League of Credit Unions.
Understandably, more parents of secondary school children are finding costs a struggle. Eight in ten (83%) say the back to school spend is a financial burden compared with 77% of parents at primary level. The findings were revealed in a national survey of 882 parents of school children by the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU). The survey was carried out by independent market research company, iReach Insights in June 2019.
Reacting to the findings, Liz Cullen (Manager) of Enniscorthy Credit Union said that the credit union is all too aware of the struggle for parents this time of year. “We do see parents approaching us around this time of year requesting assistance with taking out a loan to see them through. It’s understandable that back-to-school costs are a financial burden for so many when parents are paying out €949 for every primary school child, and over €1,399 for every secondary school child in their household. At Enniscorthy Credit Union, we offer loans for Back to School loan with an affordable rate of 12%*(12.68% APR). The loan is typically approved within 2 days and there are no hidden transaction fees or charges. As always, we are happy to work with parents to structure repayments in a way that suits their individual circumstances.”
Of concern for the credit union was the finding that, of those parents who said they were getting into debt, more than a quarter (27%) said they had turned to a moneylender in an effort to cope with back-to-school costs. This was a noticeable increase on the 20% last year who had opted for a moneylender.
Commenting on these findings, Paul Bailey of the Irish League of Credit Unions said; “We are very encouraged to see that overall, the numbers approaching moneylenders has fallen by 1% since last year (3% down from 4%). The research also showed that those using credit cards to cover the Back to School spend has decreased by 5% (falling from 18% to 13%). We see this as a very positive response to the credit union message that they are an affordable, convenient and ethical alternative to credit cards and moneylenders. We would encourage all parents in need of financial assistance to contact their local credit union and forego moneylenders and credit cards completely.”
Please don't turn to moneylenders or Credit Cards to cover Back to School costs, talk to us about a fair flexible rate. Check out our Loan calculator to work out your repayments.