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From fun to food: Australian kids caught in cost of living crunch

Kids caught in cost of living crunch_Canva_1800x1000

Australian families are having to make big sacrifices to scrape by, according to new research by Finder.

According to Finder's Parenting Report 2023, which surveyed 1,033 Australian parents of children under 12, almost half of Aussie parents (45%) admit their child has "gone without" something in the last 12 months due to cost.

That's equivalent to more than 1 million Aussie families doing it tough.

Children have had to miss out on new clothes (17%), technology (13%) and books (6%) as the cost of living crisis worsens.

A concerning 1 in 10 children (9%) have had to go without food at some stage.

Rebecca Pike, money expert, said it has been a challenging year for many families.

"Household income is just not stretching far enough, with many having to miss out on essentials and luxuries.

"As things like mortgage, rent and groceries skyrocket, something's got to give unfortunately."

Almost 1 in 5 children (18%) have had to miss out on extracurriculars as their parents didn't have the money to afford these activities.

The research coincides with findings in the UNSW Poverty In Australia 2022 Report which found there are 761,000 Australian children living below the poverty line.

The poverty line works out to $489 a week for a single adult and $1,027 a week for a couple with 2 children.

Pike urged parents to start an emergency fund so they don't find themselves in a situation where they can't put food on the table.

"Small amounts slowly start to add up and provide a buffer when times are tough.

"Remember, loyalty doesn't pay when it comes to financial products. Some savvy swaps – like cutting back on subscriptions or refinancing your home loan – could save you hundreds of dollars.

"If you're still under financial stress, consider contacting your providers and asking for a payment plan, and calling the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007," Pike said.

Children in New South Wales (47%) were the most likely to have made sacrifices, followed by those from Queensland (46%) and Victoria (46%).

Has your child had to go without any of the following in the last 12 months due to cost?
Extracurricular activities18%
New clothes17%
Source: Finder's Parenting Report 2023 of 1,033 parents of children 0–12, November 2022

Looking to buffer your savings? Here are 4 steps to creating an emergency savings fund.

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