Saving for a Baby
I was recently talking to a friend who is planning to start a family in about a year. She asked me, “what should I start doing now to start saving for a baby?” The good news…saving money for a baby IS possible even on a tight budget!
The average labor and delivery for a vaginal birth is between $3,500 – $10,000 and a c-section can run between $12,000 – $25,000. Cost of delivery, of course, depends on the hospital you choose and the amount your health insurance will cover.
How to Start Saving for a Baby
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1. Take out a Life Insurance Policy
My mom passed away at the young age of 46 after a 10 year battle with breast cancer. I was married, but my two younger brothers were still home. My parents only had life insurance to cover my dad, since he was the “bread winner” of the family. Her death was so devastating to our family, and we quickly realized that she should have had life insurance coverage too.
We never want to think about the worst things that could happen to us or our families, but choosing to be proactive in caring for your family in the event that either mother or father (or both) passes away it’s reassuring to know that your loved ones left behind will be taken care of.
Haven Life is an easier and affordable option for buying term life insurance online in minutes. You can calculate how much insurance you really need. It only take 20 minutes to apply and coverage starts right away.
If you haven’t already, create a budget and make a plan for where your money is going. There is no better time to start understanding how you are spending your money. Looking at your finances will help you to see what is important to you.
One of my favorite budgeting tools is Personal Capital – Join for Free! Personal Capital is a FREE budgeting tool similar to Mint.com but Personal Capital allows you to track investments which gives you a better overall view of your finances. I highly recommend Personal Capital!
3. Check Your Credit
Checking your credit on a regular basis is a good idea to keep track of any fraudulent activity on your account. It can take months to clean up a poor credit report, so catching any problems early is the best way to avoid long term effects to your credit.
I use a site called Credit Sesame, you can use it to check your credit almost immediately for free including details of your credit report.
4. Pay off Debt
What kind of debt do you have?
Credit cards, school loans, hospital bills, car payments…debt isn’t a reason to put off starting a family, but starting a family is a great reason to start eliminating debt to give you room for the necessary things that come along with having a baby like doctor visits, diapers, car seats, clothes (they grow so fast!), and the unexpected!
Credible, one of my favorite companies, will refinance your credit card debt to as low as 4.99% so that you can pay off your debt even faster.
There is no pre-payment penalty so that you can pay off your debt as fast as you want and reduce your interest!
They also refinance student loans to as low as 2.78% APR. The average person saves over $18,000 by refinancing!
5. Build an Emergency Fund
Basically, you can expect the unexpected when it comes to kids. Our second son was born perfectly healthy, but for some reason, he repeatedly failed an oxygen test. He had to be taken to Children’s Hospital for an echocardiogram (that gratefully showed no signs of heart damage). We were released after 2 days, but the cost was over $2000 after our insurance. We thankfully had some extra money to pay it off through our emergency fund. Since we paid it in full we also received a 25% discount, which saved us some money.
Here are some ways you can earn extra income before baby arrives to build your emergency fund:
- Take surveys: Survey Junkie – Vindale Research – Swagbucks
- Work as a search engine evaluator with Leapforce
- Check out these 50+ Ways to Make Extra Money!
6. Short Term Disability Coverage
Consider taking out disability coverage before you are pregnant to cover your maternity leave. Short Term Disability Coverage is designed to cover your salary or a portion of your salary when you cannot work due to injury, illness, or childbirth. The standard coverage for childbirth is 4-6 weeks depending on your state. If short term disability is not offered to you as an additional benefit through your state or employer then you should look into coverage through an insurance agency. If you do have to seek short term disability coverage independently then make sure you apply before you are pregnant because they will likely not cover you if you are getting the coverage for a current pregnancy.
7. Understand Insurance
Find out what type of coverage you have with your insurance. It’s a good idea to call and talk to your benefits department to find out exactly what kind of coverage you have for pregnancy and childbirth. You will also want to make sure your doctor, pediatrician, and hospital are in-network. If you are stuck paying out of network for services, it could cost you thousands of dollars.
Childcare is crazy expensive! Start planning your daycare costs and taking the payments out now to see how your budget is affected. This can help you answer some tough questions like, “Will you work or stay home? Can you work flexible hours and share the parenting duties with your partner? Even if you decide that you or your partner will stay home, you should go ahead and put your future child’s name on a waiting list for a good daycare. Reasonably priced, good quality daycares can be difficult to get into, so keeping your child’s name on the waiting list is helpful just in case you need that option later.
9. Stock Up
Start buying non-perishables like diapers and wipes; use coupons to start building a stock pile. You will go through these fast! When you start early, you have time to wait on really good sells instead of having to spend extra money because you are down to one last diaper!
RELATED: How to Get Cheap Diapers on Amazon
9. Get Paid for Shopping Online
You will likely be purchasing many items for your new baby from furniture, to room decor, to the necessities like diapers, clothes, etc.
Start earning money cash back when you shop online!
Ebates is one of the best sites for earning cash back while you shop at retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Target, and more!
Click here to get $10 cash back when you sign up and make your first purchase with Ebates!
10. Support System
Besides financial plans, you may also want to think about what kind of support system you will have in place when baby comes. If you don’t have family near by (or even if you do), you may want to think about your village. Who are the people around you that you want to be an influence in your child’s life? We have been so blessed to have amazing neighbors who are like grandparents to my boys. Sometimes your village grows from unexpected places, but you may want to seek out a church or play group or friends that can walk with you through the wild adventure of parenthood.
In reality, you will never be fully prepared for the life-changing experience of becoming a parent! These are some ideas to get you headed in the right direction!
How did you prepare for baby? What do you wish you had done differently when you started your family?
Did you know working from home is definitely a possibility if you want to stay home with that sweet little bundle?! Check out these posts for ways to make money from home!
Want an easy way to save money? Try Ibotta!
Ibotta is a cell phone app that is easy to use everywhere you go to buy groceries! You can easily earn cash back rebates and transfer the money into your Paypal account. This is seriously one of my favorite ways to save money at the grocery store!
I love this app because it is so easy to use and now it’s just part of my routine when I grocery shop. You can use this at your grocery store and even Target and Walmart! You simply find the items you want to buy in your app and then scan your purchases and receipt when you get home and put everything away.
The best part is you get to earn cash back on items that usually don’t ever have coupons like fruits, vegetables, milk, and eggs! Also, they have many items each month that are NOT BRAND SPECIFIC. So you can choose any brand in that category and still save!
If you do this all year you will have a nice chunk of change saved up from doing what you already do! Join Ibotta and earn a $10 cash bonus!
Want more details? Read my Ibotta Review
Want to earn more?