Dubai: If you’re a stay-at-home mum and have ever felt that what you do is taken for granted, it is time to set the record straight.
New research conducted in the UAE has revealed that the basic cost of an average homemaker’s ‘job’ is Dh155,600 a year. In other words, if you are a homemaker in the UAE, you are saving your family at least Dh13,000 a month by taking on a variety of roles.
Ankita Singh of Souqalmal.com, a personal finance online platform which conducted the research, said, “Many women make a conscious decision to stay at home and raise their kids. We also realised it isn’t uncommon for women, especially new mums, to take an extended hiatus from work to take care of their family.
Unfortunately, the role they play in ensuring their family’s well-being is usually taken for granted.
“Many believe that stay-at-home mothers don’t contribute to society, let a perfectly good education go waste or are simply indifferent to work. This couldn’t be further from the truth and that’s exactly what we wanted to show.”
In this day and age, where every possible service can be outsourced, we thought it was worth finding out how much it would cost to outsource a stay-at-home mum’s many jobs.
Referring to the range of tasks undertaken by a stay-at-home mum, Singh says, “Homemakers are experts at juggling many responsibilities. An average day would include cooking, tidying, laundry, driving kids to school and back, helping kids with homework and keeping them entertained, and everything in between. Now imagine how a household with both working parents would deal with these responsibilities — they’d most likely outsource these jobs.”
Singh said one needs to keep in mind that a stay-at-home mum doesn’t work the typical 48 hours a week. “Considering the 125 per cent overtime pay for every hour spent working beyond normal working hours and Dh150 spent for every hour working on Fridays, the figure would be a lot higher.”
Mum's basic tasks
Based on the average market rates for various services, Singh zeroed in on seven basic tasks that mums routinely do: cooking; housekeeping; laundry; driving; babysitting and therapy, (the indispensable advice a mum provides).
Singh said the roles and responsibilities selected were basic.
“In addition, mums also act as personal shoppers, grooming specialists, hairstylists and party planners. They also manage the household finances, prepare monthly budgets and pay the bills.”
The list is exhaustive and you can add travel planning, customised meal planning, music lessons, gardening and life coach to the roster and it wouldn’t seem out of place.
On the reason for conducting the research, Singh says: “Putting a number on a mum’s job doesn’t seem fair. Mums don’t expect to receive compensation for everything they do for their families. But in this day and age, where every possible service can be outsourced, we thought it was worth finding out how much it would cost to outsource a stay-at-home mum’s job.”