Having a baby is an emotional experience and money rarely ever factors heavily into the decision of whether or not to have a child. Nevertheless, thinking about your budget when you discover that your baby will soon be born can help to prepare you for some of the changes that you are bound to face. It can be hard to anticipate all the things you will need, especially if this is your first child, but the following system can make things a little easier:
Estimate Your One-Time Expenses
There are a number of things you need to buy and put in place for the arrival of your baby and much of it can be categorized as a one-time expense. This is comforting in one sense because it means that you can get it out of the way, but on the flip side, it also means you need to have a store of cash to draw down on. Before you start to get worried about your position, remember that you have roughly nine months to take of these things, but it is sensible to start putting aside the money right away, even if you delay the actual purchases until later on in your pregnancy. Some of the things you are going to need are listed below;
1. A travel system for your baby which includes a car set and stroller.
2. Furniture to set up your nursery; a crib, mattress, basic bedding, changing table and rocking chair for those late nights.
3. Something to keep your baby happy, which can be a bouncy chair for those times you want to keep an eye on your tiny tot and he or she has outgrown laying in a crib or playpen.
4. A highchair for meal times.
5. Bottles and other feeding items. You may decide you want to breast feed and this is certainly recommended, but it is wise to have a set of bottles ready in case things don’t go your way.
6. Medical expenses can mount up, especially if you don’t have insurance. You need to have an estimate of what these things are likely to cost; from delivery to your baby’s first few check-ups.
Think About On-Going Expenses
There are also a number of expenses you can expect to add to your monthly budget once your baby is born. Including;
Childcare; this is the number one expense for most parents, but this depends on whether or not one parent will be staying at home with the baby.
Diapers are relatively inexpensive when you look at their unit cost, but the sheer number of diapers the average baby uses in a month can be astonishing.
Clothing for your child is also a necessity. You’ll definitely need to start off with a stock of clothes for when your baby is born, but as your child grows you’ll find yourself hitting the clothing stores and it won’t be for you.
Find Ways to Adjust Your Spending During Pregnancy
This might seem like a lot to budget for in a relatively short period of time, but you can do it if you use your pregnancy wisely. Even if you don’t intend to leave your job it can help to try living on a single income so you can save the other in preparation for your baby. Alternatively you can chip away at your other budget categories to find ways to put away a little extra every month.