But the fact is, little ones come with a price tag and, as much as I love my first two and would ideally like a third child, having a third child is not something to rush into. It needs to be carefully planned and budgeted for.
If you’re in employment, as soon as you start thinking about the financial side of planning for a baby, you need to find out how much maternity or paternity pay you will get – as long as you have been working for your company for more than 26 weeks and earn more than £95 per week, you will be entitled to SMP (Statutory Maternity or Paternity Pay).
Depending on who you work for, you may find that your employer also has its own company scheme, so get in touch with your HR department or dig out your contract to find out what’s on offer.
How’s your credit looking?
For any larger, more expensive purchases, many couples find that it can be helpful (or essential!) to buy them using a credit card or other form of finance, allowing them to spread the expense over time rather than making one, lump sum payment.
To do this, you will need to make sure that your credit rating is in the best possible shape…so start preparing as early in the baby-planning process as possible by checking your credit score and identifying how you can improve your credit rating.
There are so many costs involved with having a child, so it’s really important that you sit down and make a timeline of everything you will need to pay for – this will give you a rough idea of how much you will need and by when.
Save, Save, Save
Once you decide you’re going to take the plunge and try for a baby, start saving immediately! Remember that, once you’re little one arrives, you will not only incur extra expenses, but you may also be living off a reduced income.
When you’re expecting, it can be easy to get carried away with all the exciting products available, especially if it’s your first!
I learned pretty quickly that a lot of the things you think are imperative for your new born baby can actually wait until a few months down the line, whilst others simply aren’t needed at all. Make a list of the absolute essentials, and by them first.
When your little one arrives, you’re entitled to apply for child benefit. Given the costs involved in raising your brand new bundle of joy, it definitely comes in handy!