Budgeting for a baby is not that easy, even though you stash away each dime throughout your pregnancy. The baby budget puts an additional burden on your regular expenses. It seems like being stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea when you have taken on debt.
If you set aside money for your baby, it will hit debt repayments, and if you continue to pay down the debt, you will not be able to set aside money for your baby. However, there are ways to build a baby budget without falling into debt.
Before that, you need to understand how much it does cost. You can be easily overwhelmed with budgeting when you become a parent first time. From daycare expenses to diapers, there are endless things that can shatter your budget.
Sometimes you become excited to provide them with everything like new clothes, a new crib, and the like. Undoubtedly, this can cost you an arm and a leg. However, expenses do never end here. When your baby comes into this world, they quickly double or triple. Here is how you can make a baby budget if you are expecting.
Create a budget
Even though you have never emphasised budgeting, you will have to start it as soon as you get the news that you are going to become a parent. Budgeting must be the first step to brace yourself for expenses that you will likely incur.
You may think you can do it when the baby arrives, but you should do it before. How will you manage to bear all expenses if you have not saved them before? You will have to see areas where you can cut because you know your income will not rise unexpectedly.
Check the spending of the past three to six months to see where you can cut back on. Believe it or not, you will have to whittle down your spending if you want to make room to meet baby-related expenses.
Have a list of all of the items you will need for the baby as well as the mother, such as baby swings, bottles, toys, crib, baby wipes, diapers, car seat, stroller, maternity clothes, medical emergencies, medicines, doctor consultation, childcare, and the like.
Be wary of unexpected expenses
Although you have successfully created a budget for your baby, you will likely fall short of money due to unexpected expenses. You can lose your job, or your baby may need medical care. It is crucial not to ignore such unforeseen expenses.
For them, you must have an emergency cushion. A rule of thumb says that you should have at least three-month worth of savings. Even though you are preparing a budget for your baby expenses, do not compromise with your emergency cushion.
Keep stashing away money for a rainy day because you never know when you may need it. However, sometimes your savings are not enough to cover a big expenditure. You should not worry as you can borrow money. If you have a poor credit report, you can take out bad credit loans.
Try to have settled your debts
As you know, your baby is on the way. You should have settled all of your debts before it arrives. You will not be able to contribute to emergency cushion and baby savings along with debt payments. Even though you have taken on small debts, it can be quite tricky to manage payments.
If you fall behind repayments, you will pay more than what you borrow, which will worsen your financial condition. First off, you should pay off all your debts, including credit card bills and then try not to take out a new loan until you successfully prepare a budget for your baby.
Find ways to whittle down child care cost
Childcare expenses eat up a large chunk of your money. About one-fourth of the salary goes to childcare expenses. They can hit your budget hard undoubtedly, especially when the economy is full of uncertainties.
This is why it is suggested to find some alternatives so you can save some money. You should talk to your employer if they can give a hike. You should try to look for a new job provided that offers you higher remuneration.
It will be good to have an elder member in your family who can look after your child. Cutting back on daycare expenses is not that easy, but you can do it with the given options.
Buy your baby necessities
You can be excited to provide your baby with everything new, but this cannot be possible all the time. This is why you should try to buy necessities. There are a lot of things that you may avoid buying new.
For instance, you can get hand-me-downs and toys from your friends or relatives who have already become parents, and their baby has grown up. You can also get a crib from them. However, if you do not know anyone, you can decide o buy a second-hand crib. Similarly, there are a lot of things that you can buy from a thrift store at low prices.
Creating a baby budget can be daunting, but you can easily tackle it if you follow the tips mentioned above.