Things to Consider Before Starting a Family

Save for Retirement With These Tips

Starting a family changes every aspect of your life, particularly your finances. When it comes to family planning, financial planning should be a large part of the equation–whether you are still thinking about starting a family, or if a baby is already on the way.

            The cost of raising a child born in 2015 to age 17 is $233,610–excluding the cost of college–for a middle-income family, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. One of the first things you should do when planning a family is to look at how a child or multiple children will impact your day-to-day finances and your retirement planning.

            While it is easy to get swamped by the baby planning that involves everything from cribs and car seats, to diapers, baby clothes and the countless other items for a new baby, there are other important things you will want to focus on such as health insurance. You will want to look at what kind of coverage your health insurance provides and what it will cost to add a new dependent and compare that to the coverage of your partner, if they also have health insurance. It is also helpful to know what kind of coverage your healthcare will provide for your child’s birth.

            Life insurance is another important consideration. You’ll want to ensure that your child will be well cared for in case something happens to you or your partner. It is also important to have a will in place and to determine and outline who will care for your child if anything were to happen to both you and your partner.

Another major factor in having children is daycare. According to data from Care.com, the average cost for one week of childcare for a single infant in the U.S. was $211 in 2019 or $596 for a nanny. Depending on where you live, childcare could also be significantly higher and is something you should look into. Depending on your salary, it might make sense for one parent to stop working instead of paying for childcare, particularly when multiple children are involved.            

These are a few factors to consider in planning your family finances. You may want to consider hiring a financial advisor to help with your planning. Be sure to start building up enough emergency savings to get your family through any unexpected issues, such as the loss of a job or a serious illness. Financial advisors typically suggest saving at least six months of day-to-day living expenses to give yourself enough time to get back on your feet from such an event  – something that can be even harder once you have a child depending on you.

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