December 9, 2010, 6:00 am

Are You Ready For a Baby?

by: MD    Category: Frugal
email this postEmail This Post Print This PostPrint This Post Post a CommentPost a Comment

Are you ready for a baby? Are you expecting a baby or know someone that is? If so then this is the perfect article for you.

I recently reviewed Generation Earn. I mentioned how many of the sections in the book were sort of useless to me in my current life situation. There was a chunk of the book dedicated to baby and wedding talk. That part wasn’t of any use to me. However, that’s the great thing about writing about personal finance. You can really write about anything that you want. Since I know couples that have recently had a baby and chances are that many young professionals will go through this eventually, I figured I could actually read the part about babies and we could talk about getting ready for a baby today.

Getting ready for a baby:

Hopefully you were expecting your new baby, if not then it’s still all good. You still have 9 months to prepare.

Find out the cost of adding another person to your current health insurance.

The pregnancy stage is the best time to find out how much it’s going to cost you to put another person under your current health plan. You need to get this over with so that you don’t have to deal with it later on in life.

Save up for baby expenses.

Some experts on this topic advise you to save up a few months worth of baby expenses, others urge you to get used to living life with baby-related expenses while still going through the pregnancy. Either way you should try your best to put money aside for your new found baby expenses (toys, diapers, clothes, etc.).

Take care of major purchases.

A friend of mine was considering buying a new car for the longest time. Finally when he found out that his wife was pregnant he decided to take the plunge and buy that new car. He felt that he needed something more reliable for the new born. Many older friends have told me that it’s a great idea to take care of your major expenses in life (home, new car, home improvements, and education) before you bring a child into the world.

Figure out the maternity rules at your workplace.

I remember mocking a male friend because he was going to stay home with the new baby instead of his wife. He explained to us that he was doing this because his work granted him a one year leave of absence, while his wife could only get 6 months off. Every work place has different policies in place for maternity leaves. You should look into yours so you know exactly how much time you or your partner will be getting off

Saving money for a baby:

Once you’ve started to plan for your baby financially and generally, you can then move forward to worry about figuring out how you’ll pay for your new baby and baby related expenses.

Borrow from other parents.

You might know other couples that just had a baby, or you could even ask relatives. Chances are that you won’t be the only couple in your circle of friends to have a baby. This is why you should always help out others. Hopefully another couple that you know will be willing to loan basic baby supplies to you guys.

Take advantage of free/cheap baby stuff.

You can sign up at freecycle.org to find used baby items from other parents. You should also look for as many freebies as you can. I know that when my youngest brother turned 6 that my parents couldn’t wait to get rid of all of the baby stuff. Luckily for another couple in our family, they were able to pick up all of this baby stuff for free. These are major savings for a young couple in their 20s.

Wait until after birth to buy toys.

You never know what kind of toys your baby is going to want to play with. You also never know what kind of freebies/gifts you’ll receive for your newborn baby. It’s recommended that you save the money but hold off on any actual purchases for baby toys until after birth.

Try living on less.

Some parents are simply too busy with their careers to take any extended time off. Unless you have a relative that is retired and willing to help you out or you work from home, chances are that you’re going to have to pay for daycare. Daycare is not cheap by any means. Young couples are often advised to consider living on $500-900 less a month. The reason for this is that this is how much you might end up forking over for daycare costs. Could you survive financially without this money in your pocket?

[Note: I'm not a parent nor am I expecting children any time soon. However, having a baby is a popular topic for young professionals. The goal of this blog to help you guys deal with any money issues that might come your way in life.]

Have any of you had a baby lately? Were you ready for it financially?

(photo credit: jcestnik)

Similar Posts:

You Want More? Sign-up! ->
TFB VIP Newsletter


If you liked this articles, you might want to sign for my FULL RSS FEEDS. If you prefer to receive the posts in your email, subscribe CLICK HERE


Comments

Thanks for the hints and tips TFB. We may need to reference this article in the next year or so. Consider it book marked ;)
We are prepared financially (we think)!

My friend is willing to have a kid soon. The couple just moved into a new house. I am really excited for her. Like you said, they have 9 months to discuss about the budget priorities that will change.

Do you think it’s a great time to invest in life insurance? Should you create an emergency fund? How can you estimate the “new costs” in your budget per month?

[...] the article here: Are You Ready For a Baby?   Posted in: [...]

I would also like to have tips to estimate the “new costs” per month, other than the daycare costs. I too think this article should talk about life insurance. It is to me very important everything is settled down before a child is born. Parents are not only a couple, they become a family. So everything regarding family needs should be discussed.
Also, living on less might be true but might also be easier than some think. As a couple, most go out for dinner, go watch a movie, take a beer with friends here and there, etc. When a child comes, things change. Parents don’t go out as often and tend to do activities at home. I am sure this changes make a difference for many.

The tip on the health insurance is very important. There are waiting periods (4 months) when making changes to your coverage. Consider upping your hospital coverage right away during the pregnancy if you want to get a private room fully covered…and yes, a private room is a MUST!

We just had our baby 10 days ago, and outside the major purchases (furniture) the expenses haven’t been too bad just yet. The baby is breast feeding so there is no food cost and diapers aren’t too expensive yet.

My goodness- not my time yet, but good to think about, especially since a lot of my colleagues are expecting. I am always shocked to hear how much day care costs here. It is sometimes more financially feasible to have one parent stay home instead, eh?

by: The Financial Blogger | December 12th, 2010 (9:43 am)

@Evan,
don’t worry, the kids will start to poo as a poo manufacture once he starts eating… wait in 6 months and you’ll see ;-)
Congrats on the baby!

@Y&T,
this is what we decided (to have my wife stays home) .we have much time to spend in family than doing the grocery now ;-D

[...] Are You Ready For a Baby? If you are expecting more than just gifts this Christmas, you’d better ask yourself “Am I ready?” because that little bundle of joy may just catch you off guard. [The Financial Blogger] [...]

It’s not always easy to prepare, and sometimes if you wait until you’re completely “ready” for a baby, you will never have one. That was the realization I came to, and we tried for over a couple years to get pregnant, finally getting success several months after starting to work with a fertility specialist (which was an added expense we really couldn’t have completely prepared for but made it through okay). Then came many unexpected circumstances that had me starting to wonder whether or not this was the right choice… of course all after it was too late to do anything about it. We’ve just had to go with the flow and realize that things will work themselves out because of who we are, regardless of how difficult they may be at times.

The big expenses probably come later, like cars and college, and perhaps private schooling ;) I think I’m ready for a baby, and I don’t fear the expenses, not while they’re tots.

Thanks for installing Conditional Captcha BTW! :)

[...] The Financial Blogger asks, Are You Ready For a Baby? [...]