Baby on the Way? How to Beat Budget Blues
Ask someone whose got kids for advice, and most likely you’ll hear: “Your life will never be the same again.” But that statement is almost always quickly followed by: “But it’s so worth it!” If you’re having your first child and up until now, haven’t had to provide for anyone but yourself, there will be some big changes - especially in the way you spend your money. But with some careful planning, you won't be caught off guard. We compiled a list of things to help you get started.
Put plans in place
- Budget - literally. Make of the additional costs you will have to cover, and adjust your spending accordingly. Here’s a useful trimester-by-trimester guide.
- Maternity Leave. If you are working, you will need to factor in the effect of maternity leave on your income.
- Life Insurance. Although life insurance is pretty much a grudge purchase, it is extremely helpful when unforeseen events occur - especially where you have dependents. Products such as life insurance, dread disease cover, disability cover and income protection may sound excessive, they may provide a crucial buffer for your family in a time of need. Use our life insurance calculator to work out if you need to up your life insurance cover.
- Medical Aid. With your baby on the way, if you don’t already have a hospital plan or some other type of medical aid, it may be a good time to look into this. It is also good to have this available for your baby once s/he is born.
- Emergency Fund. Life with children is unpredictable, and you want to be in a financial position to navigate the surprises that come your way. Now’s a good time to open an instant-access savings account and start putting aside what you can afford.
- Start saving early - education. You can open a tax-free savings account to put aside whatever you can afford on a monthly basis. Unit trusts are also an option that you might want to consider. Here are some more helpful tips.
- Be creative in your spending. When buying baby supplies, not everything has to be new - you may want to look at second-hand options. Also, retail markets and factory shops are great places to find very affordably priced things that you may need.
- Cut your grocery bill. With some good planning, you can save a lot - here’s how.