A new baby will bring joy to your family, as well as headaches in your personal budgeting. Before your new family member arrives in the midst of your family, you need to start updating your family budgeting, especially in the expenses column.
Here are some tips to help you budget for the arrival:
1. Create a list
List the items you will need for your baby. Ask family members or friends who are new parents to help you make and refine your list.
2. Your baby’s first year
Consider your baby’s need for the first year – furniture (crib, changing table, etc.,) gear (car seat, stroller, baby chair, etc.,) bathroom accessories (diapers, wipes, towels, etc.,) feeding (bottles, pumps, etc.,) and other needs, including yours (diaper bag, etc.)
3. Other caring expenses
Also consider these to fit into your budget: child care, insurances, etc. including a decrease in income if a parent stays at home.
4. Compare prices
By now, you should have a good list of your baby’s need. Your next step would be compare prices. A hint: shop online for massive price cuts!
5. Calculate, review, prioritize and adjust
Add the costs to make a total. From this total, you need to review whether you want to spend the amount or not. Chances are, you will find that you need to take some, less important, items off from the list to cut your spending.
6. Stick to your budget and adjust it along the way
Your next step would be sticking to your budget. Record expenses as they occur and try to balance your budget (if you spend more, subtract the same amount from others in your list; if you spend less, consider it as a reserve for other needs.) You will also need to adjust your budget according to your circumstances.
7. Long term planning
From the first year and beyond, you need to consider other costs, as well, such as toys and educational expenses. Save and invest early – this is the best advice I can give as it has been proven time and time again that saving and investing early will make a huge difference later on.