How Having a Baby Changes Your Finances

This post is inspired by some exciting news I have been waiting to share with you all. We’re having a baby this summer! Baby Dough is due July 2019. Naturally, with a new addition to our family, we’re going to have to make some big changes to our life. One aspect of that includes making some adjustments to our budget. I figured as my husband and I are thinking these things through for ourselves, why not share with everyone? Here are just some ways how having a baby changes your finances.

Medical

From the start of a pregnancy through the birth of the baby, the mother will see an increase in her medical costs. The exact amount of medical expenses incurred differs per person depending on the health insurance plan they have, the doctor(s) they see and their specific health situation (i.e. if someone needs medication to treat certain illnesses or if they are high risk, etc.).

Aside from the increased cost of medical for the mother, after the baby is born, the cost of health insurance will increase when you are required to switch to a family plan to ensure the child is insured, as well.

Home Renovation

Having a baby usually means redoing a room in your house to become that baby’s nursery/bedroom. For us, that means painting and buying all new furniture and accessories. If you’re lucky enough to have a baby shower, maybe you will register for some or all of the things needed for the nursery; however, it is likely you will end up having to purchase at least some things for the nursery yourself. Some items I can think of off the top of my head for the nursery include: paint, rug, crib, bookshelf, small hangers, wall décor, curtains, sheets, blankets, changing table, dresser and plenty more.

Grocery Budget

We are fully expecting to increase our grocery line in our budget when we go from a family of two to a family of three. Whether its formula, baby food, snacks, wipes, diapers (depending where you buy them from), lotions or whatever, having a baby will require additional monthly purchases that you certainly weren’t making before.

Clothing Budget

From what I have heard, people will buy your child tons of clothes. That may be true, but I think as a parent, you still want to do at least some clothing shopping of your own for your child too. Babies are also constantly growing, so you can imagine that you will need to switch from one size to the next pretty quickly. Another thing that tends to happen is the clothes tend to be ruined more frequently than an adult’s clothes. This means even more new clothes to buy.

College Tuition

If you decide you want to help pay for your child’s college tuition, the sooner you start saving, the better off you will be by the time they are ready to go to college. You will want to start setting aside money as soon as possible and depending how you decide to manage this cost, you will either be setting money aside weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annually or annually.

Childcare

Not everyone has the option to, or wants to, not go back to work after they have a baby. For these people, the cost of childcare becomes a very large part of their budget. The average cost of child center care throughout the United States ranges from $5,307 per year in Mississippi to $20,415 in Massachusetts (per Child Care Aware of America). This is a massive financial adjustment.

 

Obviously these are just some of the many, many ways your finances change when you have a baby. BUT from everything I have been told, kids are totally worth all the money they cost you, so here’s hoping ;).

 

What other financial changes did you experience when having a baby or do you expect to encounter?

4 thoughts on “How Having a Baby Changes Your Finances

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  1. First, Congratulations Courtney! Yes your lives or life will really change when you start a family. Best of luck to both of you or rather all three of you.

    I just thought I’d add a quick comment about saving for Children College Tuition. Since my youngest is almost 25, it has been a long time since I had to think about all that. I did start savings accounts for each of my children but they all had different paths and so we wound up having to pay for only 1 child’s college education. The oldest got an appointment to West Point and the youngest has autism. In any case as you are building your life and raising children finding extra money for college saving programs is very difficult. I think we all must think of our retirement first and not skimp on saving for that. My plan which worked out well for us was to be sure that our house was totally paid off before anyone went to college. That way the monthly cash that went for the mortgage payment could be re-purposed to pay college costs. At the time that our daughter went to a private college, we were able to handle the monthly payments for each semester’s tuition, this included dorm and food costs as well. She wound up being on the 5 year plan but it all worked out well. She got here degree and was debt free when she finished. We didn’t have to tap into any savings to pay for her college.

    This is something to keep in mind. There are a lot of expenses with a family. The oldest two both went to parochial school which also cost money. It was all accomplished without having to go into debt.

    1. Thank you, Alan!

      I appreciate you telling your story and offering up some advice. Luckily, we made sure to have a low monthly mortgage payment when we bought our house; however, it is something we always talk about paying off as soon as we feel comfortable. I think having the mortgage paid off before college would be great (we’ll be in our house for 6 years by the time the baby is born so 6 + 18 puts us 6 years shy of being paid off).

      That being said, my husband and I are not particularly set on opening a 529, but rather investing the money separately that way in a worst case scenario, the funds could be utilized for an emergency if need be.

      As you mentioned and were able to accomplish, we would ideally like to have our child(ren) come out of college debt free and we’d like to be debt free ourselves, as well! We are very debt averted people.

  2. Congrats! We are expecting our first this July as well and have been researching daycare and all other options. Looking forward to your posts and happy news 🙂

    1. Thank you so much! Congrats to you, too!!

      I hope you’re able to find a reasonable and reliable daycare!! It is pretty insane how much these places cost!

      We are hoping to avoid the daycare route for as long as possible in hopes that someone we know (i.e. family) is able to watch the baby instead.

      Keep me posted!

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