If you’re preparing for a baby, then, first of all, congratulations! Having a baby will undoubtedly be one of the most magical and exciting times of your life.
But we understand that it can also be quite a daunting experience, and there’s probably gazillion different things running through your mind.
Nursery. Diapers. Baby clothes. Pushchairs. *How do you even change a diaper?!* For sure, having a baby is a huge commitment and one you really do need to prepare for.
We all also know that having a baby does not come cheap. In fact, a recent 2021 study by Spend Me Not finds that the cost of raising a child in the USA until age 17 is a whopping $233,610 on average!
So, getting ahead of the game and ensuring you’re financially prepared for your little arrival will take a huge weight off your shoulders.
Thankfully though, there are lots of ways you can prepare to start budgeting for a baby early. Here are some practical tips for how to prepare for a baby financially:
Review Your Policies
Amend Your Life Insurance
Opening a life insurance policy is never more important than when you have a new-born baby to provide your family with financial security.
If you already have life insurance, then make sure you let your insurance provider know so they can amend your policy to cover your dependents.
Before opening a new policy, you should check with your employer as you may be entitled to life insurance as part of your employee benefits package, or at least at a discounted rate.
Amend Your Family Health Plan
We all know that kids can be pretty injury prone, so it’ll save you a lot of money in the long run if you get them added to your family health plan from an early age!
Speak to your health insurance supplier to find out how soon you need to add them to your policy. And don’t forget to shop around for the best deals on price-comparison sites.
If you need any over-the-counter medicines, then it might even be cheaper to buy online if you can find any current pharmacy and medicine coupon codes.
Make a Will
If you’re a parent with a child under the age of 18, then a having a Will in place is crucial. Even if it’s your second or third child, then you need to keep updating your Will to ensure it’s current.
A Will ensures that your financial investments are protected. And that your child and their guardian wouldn’t suffer from a financial burden if anything were to happen to you.
Bank Accounts & Budgeting
Make a New Monthly Budget
Now it’s time to crunch the numbers!
You will likely see a huge impact on your monthly income and may need to rely on just one salary for up to the first year after having your baby, or even longer.
As well as having a reduced income, you’ll also find that your monthly outgoings will increase. You may need to pay for nursery, and obviously there’ll be more expenses in baby clothes and food etc.
The last thing you want to do is get to the end of the month and realise you’ve no money left. So it’s important that you completely review your monthly budget before your baby arrives. This will allow you to assess what your new disposable income will be as a family and to make sure you don’t overspend anywhere.
Cut Down Your Debt
If you’re struggling with debt, then now could be a great time to try and get it wiped off.
Worrying about debt will be an added stress to you and your family once your baby arrives, so you should make a conscious attempt to pay it off where possible.
You could look for different ways to help save money, such as by switching energy providers or looking for any current energy & heating coupon codes. Any money you can save from these sorts of things can then go into your debt fund.
Increase Your Rainy-Day Fund
With money tighter, a rainy-day fund is even more important. And as we’ve seen over the last year – having an emergency fund really does pay.
Before your baby arrives, try to increase your rainy-day fund as much as possible. This could help cover anything unexpected – such as any additional healthcare costs you may incur or any last-minute home improvements.
When you’re closing in on your due date, the last thing you want to be doing is stressing about money. You could even work out how much extra you expect to be paying once your baby arrives, and start transferring that to your rainy-day fund now to help you get used to it.
Review Your Direct Debits
Let’s be serious, once you have a baby, you’re definitely not going to have the time to use your monthly members card at the theatre!
Go through and review all of your direct debits and decide on any that you could probably do without.
For any subscriptions that you do want to keep, such as Netflix for example, shop around to make sure you’re getting the best deal. Or in this case you could look for any streaming coupons to help reduce the costs.
Get Baby-Ready on a Budget
Create a Baby Budget
First things first, when shopping for your baby – creating a baby budget can really help.
This should include everything you need for your home and nursery – as well as baby clothes, food, nappies, and even maternity clothes.
Speak to friends and family or research online and make a list of everything you’re going to need then work out the most affordable way of shopping for it all. Then make sure you stick to your budget!
Sell Your Junk
To make room for the new nursery and the million stuffed toys that are about to fill your home, you could probably do with a clear out!
Have a thorough deep clean of your home and be ruthless with getting rid of things that you really don’t need.
This will create heaps of space in your house for you – and by selling your unwanted things you can also make a bit of pocket money whilst you’re at it!
DON’T Shop Until You Drop
With the excitement of having a baby, you may find yourself wanting to impulse buy every cute romper or stuffed toy that you find. But please, don’t!
You will more than likely be overwhelmed with gifts at your baby shower. And will probably even end up with multiples of every item.
Stick to your baby budget and only buy what you really need. When shopping around, search for any offers you can take advantage of.
You could also look to recycle! If it’s your second or third baby, then find the old stash of clothes you’ve been hoarding in the attic. Or even if it’s your first – your family and friends will likely have tonnes they’d be more than happy to donate.
Always Check for Coupons!
Last but not least, always check for coupons and discounts for absolutely everything!
You’re going to be parents now, so haggling for the best deals and searching the internet for the best coupon codes will come second nature to you.
You’ll probably be surprised at just how many discount and coupon codes there are out there for a vast number of things.
And when they’re old enough – we can guarantee that your kids will spend all of your spare cash anyway. So best to start saving it up now!