People often wonder if they’re ‘ready’ to have a baby, and the answer most people will give is that there’s never a right time to have one – you’ll always be unprepared! However, one of the ways you can prepare yourself to start a family is financially.
Let’s not beat around the bush, babies are expensive, there are a lot of costs to consider to welcome a baby, as well as how maternity leave can affect your household income. Being as prepared as you can with money can make a big difference, helping you ease into parenthood that little bit smoother.
Want to know more about budgeting for a baby? Here are some things to consider.
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Save as much as you can
When it comes to having a baby, it’s wise to save as much as you can before the baby arrives. This is the time you’ll really want to tighten your purse strings. Some simple ways to save extra money each month including cutting down on your grocery spend and perhaps getting rid of your gym membership and working out from home instead.
Put as much money away as you can to help you afford the various expenses that come with a baby. These new money habits will serve you well once the baby has arrived, helping you continue to manage your household budget effectively.
Plan your income for your maternity leave
Employee maternity packages vary greatly, so it’s important to know what your workplace policy is. From there, you can start to plan your finances accordingly. One tactic many families adopt is to save the income difference before you have the baby so that you can ‘top-up’ your wages as needed. Planning for maternity leave can help you make some sensible decisions, and will let you work out just how much time you can take off from work.
Be sensible with what you buy
It’s natural to want the best for your baby, but most new parents will tell you they wasted a lot of money on stuff they didn’t need, especially at the beginning. When shopping around for baby stuff, consider shopping second-hand. Most items like cots or prams are only used for a certain amount of months and could be as good as new at a much cheaper price. Look up what you really need for a baby and try to find ways to cut your spending.
Think about some unexpected costs too
Life is unpredictable, and when planning for a baby you should also factor in some unexpected costs in case you need to dip into savings. You might need IVF or other treatments as you try for a baby, so that’s worth considering too. Even if you don’t end up using them, some emergency savings are always good to have, and can act as a cushion once the baby’s born.
With a lot to think about before you have a baby, your finances are one thing you can plan for effectively. Start saving now and working out your budget to help you feel confident about money ready for starting a family.