While most of us know >having a baby is one of life’s big expenses, we are too busy trying to navigate through those difficult initial months of our baby’s life, with midnight feedings, dashes to the supermarket, and the stress, all the stress! But from a financial perspective what is the cost of early parenthood, and what are the most expensive aspects? And is there anything we can do to ensure that we can focus on our children without panicking about our financial situation?
The Lack Of Maternity And Paternity Pay
It depends on where you live, but the statutory maternity and paternity pay means that you can, at the very least, take a few weeks off to support your child. But, for those people who are self-employed, they aren’t entitled to anything of the sort. Usually, this means that they have to go straight back to work, but while we could search for a no guarantor loan or other financial injections to keep us ticking over, for most people who are self-employed, there is literally no option but to go back to work.
The Unforeseen Costs
A very good example, especially in countries where you need to pay for medical help is the general cost of giving birth to a baby, and if there are additional complications, staying in the hospital until all is well. Medical insurance is the obvious answer to this, but if we cannot afford medical insurance, and something unforeseen happens, this can keep us up at night. But luckily, the Affordable Care Act is still in place, meaning that insurers cannot deny coverage, especially for parents to be. On the other hand, there are options to negotiate for discounts on insurance, as well as a chance you would be eligible for Medicaid or COBRA, but it’s worth checking these first.
The (Never-ending) Baby Supplies
Most of us are lucky and have family members willing to donate diapers, furniture, and various other components to ensure our baby is sufficiently cared for. But as expensive as all these things are, if we have to sort them ourselves, there are many options available. There’s always places like Craigslist or Gumtree, where people are looking to offload baby clothes. Yes, it might take the shine off the situation somewhat if your baby is wearing second-hand clothes, but if you are strapped for cash, there aren’t many other options.
In addition to this, if you decide to feed your baby formula, this can be, surprisingly, quite an expense. Breastfeeding is the cheaper option, but you have to weigh it up, what is beneficial for everybody in the house, not just in a financial sense, but a personal one also? Parenthood is expensive on a grand scale, but it’s these three areas that form the basis for a lot of financial anxieties. Preparing for financial lulls will help no end, but, think about your own attitudes towards money. Planning and preparing for financial droughts will help infinitely, not just throughout the early months, but the ensuing years too.