Preparing For The Unanticipated Finances Of Having A Child

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Published Aug 11, 2016

Prepping for parenthood isn’t just tiny clothes and heartwarming ultrasound pictures; it involves serious financial preparation. This article lays out the most pressing financial tasks on your plate from pregnancy to your baby’s first steps.

Preparing For The Unanticipated Finances Of Having A Child

Children are small people who require a big financial investment from their parents. When a couple adds together the costs of furniture, bottles, diapers, formula as well as an increase in doctor's visits and more, having a child is expensive. People who are considering starting a family should consider the financial aspect of it. It is possible to prepare for the many expenses involved and not be overwhelmed by them.

Costs Of Having Children

It has been estimated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that children born to middle-income parents can anticipate spending over $225,000 on their child during the first 17 years. Over 55 percent of people are going to have children no matter what the condition of the economy. Many future parents are willing to adjust their career goals and lifestyle in order to adapt to any situation in order to be parents.


Many new parents don't plan to have meals prepared during the first few months of having a baby. It's a time when the parents may be feeling overwhelmed and be sleep-deprived. They are dealing with the constant and regular feedings of their newborn child. New parents in this situation often resort to getting fast food or having food delivered. This can drive up food costs. Experienced parents recommend preparing a number of meals before the arrival of the baby. This is an easy way to have healthy meals and save money on food.

Utility Bills

Many couples don't anticipate an increase in their utility bills. One couple experienced an increase of over 30 percent for the water bill and electricity bill doubled. Their child was born during the winter months, and they live in an area that has very cold weather. They were able to decrease their costs for electricity by buying a space heater and putting it in their child's room.

Child Care

A couple also needs to anticipate if one parent will take a few years away from work to be a full-time parent or they'll pay for child care. In many cases, the amount paid for child care equals another mortgage payment. Some parents pay up to $1,600 or more for full-time child care. There have been situations where parents have gotten together and done something called nanny sharing. This is when a few couples pay one nanny to watch their children. Doing this has saved money for many couples without sacrificing quality of care.

Health Insurance Plans

Any couple who is planning to start a family needs to know what is and is not covered under their health insurance plan. Not all insurance plans are the same. It's important to know if payments for doctor's visits during the pregnancy is done by a flat fee or for each appointment. Questions to ask a health insurance providers should cover the co-pay requirements, deductibles, birthing classes, required and recommended testing, co-insurance as well as out-of-pocket requirements and more.

Home And Car

An apartment or small house that works well as a couple may no longer meet their needs once a child is born. This could require moving to a larger apartment as well as buying or leasing a larger home. Changing homes could also be motivated by the size of the anticipated family. More children will require more space. As children grow, they will probably be involved in a number of activities. This may require another vehicle or a larger vehicle to accommodate as well as a change in auto coverage.


It's nice when people provide clothing at baby showers. The reality is that babies grow very fast and outgrow clothing quickly. When parents are planning a family, it's important they budget for clothing. This could involve getting used clothing from friends and family as well as looking for specials at local stores. A child's growing doesn't stop and neither will their need for outfits.

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MIkkie Mills

Written by MIkkie Mills

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