Pre-baby, I bought the shoes, had all the dinners, gym memberships and never batted an eyelid.
Those were the days.
That was all until I got pregnant and my husband and I started doing the maths around parental leave and our new baby-on-board budget. Don’t even get me started on how someone so small can cost so much!
With a new addition (or additions) to your family, the money questions can feel pretty epic. How am I going to provide for myself and my kids? How can I afford childcare? What about my insurance? And what do I do with my super?
There are so many things to consider when you’re getting your money in order for starting a family. To help other parents in that planning phase, I asked Mamamia‘s parenting community to share their tips about financially and emotionally preparing for life with a baby.
Pity it’s three years too late for me, but better late than never!
“I was able to take a full year’s leave at half pay.”
It’s worth checking whether your workplace offers any parental leave incentives. Bec’s did, so she took full advantage. “My workplace allows us to ‘buy’ leave so I did that for a couple of years beforehand. I was then able to take a full year’s leave at half pay. It was such a relief to not have to worry about money and just enjoy my baby.” Elizabeth suggests “seeing if you can cash out any annual or long service leave, or asking the bank if you can take a ‘mortgage break”. Her final tip? “Do a budget.”
“We lived on one wage.”
Clearly not everyone can do or wants to do this, but for Briony it worked.
“We lived on one wage once we were engaged,” she told us. “When the baby came, we were used to living modestly which reduced the stress of having to rush back to work.”
If you don’t have that option, consider doing what Bridie did: “We created a baby fund well in advance.”