Getting Financially Prepared for a Baby
With the joys of welcoming new life into your family also comes more responsibility. The planning that goes into having a child shouldn’t stop at picking out names and decorating the nursery. SmartAboutMoney.org offers ways to financially prepare for your child too.
Estimate and Save for Costs of Having the Baby
Before becoming pregnant, or while you’re pregnant, estimate the cost of having the baby, including hospital expenses and finances you’ll need during maternity leave. Divide the cost by how many months you have left in your pregnancy or estimated delivery date, and save that amount per month to prepare for the first few months of baby’s life.
Know How Costs are Covered
Understand how costs are covered and what you need to do to either save for baby expenses or to make sure the costs are covered by another party. Make sure you understand your insurance policy and what it covers, including unexpected medical expenses like C-sections. Find out if your medical provider charges by appointment or flat fee, and if you are using a flex spending plan, contribute more if you can.
Know How it Affects Employment
Make sure you understand your company’s maternity and paternity leave policies, including prenatal doctor visits, and whether your company has to adhere to the Federal and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). If you have unused vacation and/or sick leave, ask if you can use that during maternity leave so that you still have income. Finally, if you need cash during maternity leave, find out if at-home part-time work is a feasible option.