It’s no surprise that having a child is a serious financial investment. According to a US Department of Agriculture report released last year, it costs an estimated $241,080 for a middle-income couple to raise a child – a number that can cause massive money stress for those in the baby-planning period. However, before the baby actually comes, there’s plenty of time and lots of ways to amply prepare your budget for the change. We’ve done our research and compiled 4 of the best tips for getting your finances in tip-top shape while you await your bundle of joy, and can help keep your budget healthy after the birth!
Accept the Generosity of Others
More than likely, you aren’t the only person excited for your child to come! Family and friends love to help support new parents, so before you make too many purchases, wait for events like baby showers that can often help stock you up on essentials like clothes, diapers, towels and more. Plus, those around you that have already had children will likely be willing to donate their gently used supplies as well; a win-win, since they get to clear out their homes, you don’t have to spend any more money!
Keep Buying At Bay
When you see internet articles on the newest and greatest baby buys, you may think your child needs all the extras to be happy. Realistically, most parents find that they bought things or were given items that were never used and simply took up space. Before the baby actually comes, wait to make purchases for all those “nice-to-haves” until you know what will actually be beneficial for your child.
Prepare for Living on One Income
If mom (or dad) is planning on taking an extended break off work after the baby comes, you’ll want to prepare ahead of time for the period where you’ll be surviving on one income. Start making adjustments to the budget, like cutting down cable or lessening up on those frequent meals out. It’s often recommended that you try to live off of one income before the birth, so you have time to adjust to the change in spending. This will also provide you a few months of extra savings to serve as a backup once the child does come!
Consider Life Insurance & Preparing a Will
It may seem a little morbid to think about a death in the family during such a joyous time, but there’s nothing smarter than protecting your new child from tragedy. Think of this as a life jacket – while it may seem like nothing could happen, it’s better to be safe than sorry if your child found themselves in deep water. An inexpensive life insurance policy can help when it comes to medical bills and unexpected health issues, and for a relatively inexpensive fee, you can guarantee your wishes are put in writing.
How would you prepare for a new baby? Let us know in the comments below! If you liked this post, you'll also like "Teaching Your Kids Good Spending Habits."