Starting a family can be a wonderful time, full of memories that will be with you for life. However, there is no denying it can put a strain on you financially.
Our top 10 tips are designed to help you financially and leave you to enjoy your new family.
Tip 1: Maternity leave
If you’re working, you may be entitled to statutory maternity or paternity pay from your employer. Your company may pay you more than the legal minimum, so find out what they offer. If you don’t qualify for statutory maternity pay there are other allowances available.
Tip 2: Benefits and Tax Credits
Having a baby can put a strain on your budget. But there are a number of benefits and tax credits to help you before and after the baby arrives, so see what’s available.
Tip 3: Budget
Babies are expensive, and if you or your partner cut back on work, you’ll have less money coming in. But a little planning can help you keep on top of things, remember you may spend less on certain things such as socialising, but you will have another mouth to feed and clothe!
It is worth reviewing all of your outgoings to see if they can be reduced in anyway.
Your mortgage is generally your biggest monthly commitment. It is therefore worth reviewing this to make sure you are on the most competitive rate possible.
Tip 4: Save for the Future
It might seem a long way off but time flies and planning for future capital expenditure such as school fees, university education or even weddings is something best tackled sooner rather than later.
An ISA (Individual Savings Account) is a logical place to save as it is tax efficient, provides you with access to your savings, and can be invested in a variety of different places.
Tip 5: Use the Child Trust Fund voucher wisely
Child Trust Fund (CTF) is a savings and investment account for children.
Children will receive a £250 voucher to start their account, and a further £250 voucher at age seven. Additionally, children in families with low incomes will get an extra payment from the Government.
The account belongs to the child and can’t be touched until they turn 18, so that children have some money behind them to start their adult life.
All returns are free of Capital Gains and Income Tax.
Tip 6: State Pension – Protecting your benefits
If you’re not paying National Insurance contributions because you’re bringing up children or caring for someone, you may be able to get Home Responsibilities Protection to protect your State Pension.
Tip 7: Emergency Money
It’s always a good idea to have some savings that you can dip into in an emergency. Shop around to get a good deal but make sure that you can get at your money when you need it.
Our Best Buy Savings Accounts will show you where to get the best interest rate on your savings.
Tip 8: Review your protection
This is one of the most important things you should consider when you have a family.
You will soon have another mouth to feed and another person dependent upon your income.
You should take some time to think about what would happen if you were unable to work through illness or accident, or even worse, if you were to die prematurely.
Many people review their protection when they take on a large financial commitment such as a mortgage. It makes sense to take another look at this area when you start a family.
There are many different options available to you and it is important that you select the right one that provides you with the cover you need, and equally importantly, fits with your budget.
Tip 9: Make a Will
It’s easy to put off making a will, but it’s important to make sure your family will be provided for if anything happened to you. You also need to think about who would look after any children under 18, if something happened to you and your partner.
Tip 10: Look after yourself & enjoy it!
It’s important to look after your health as well as your money when you’re expecting a baby. You may be able to get a one-off payment to help you stay well and healthy, and to meet extra costs during the later stages of your pregnancy.