Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Tips on Financially Preparing for a Second Child

For many people, having a child is one of life's greatest joys. And if you're a financially sound parent, hopefully you asked yourself this important question before coming face to face with your bundle of joy: Can we afford it?

According to the latest data available from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a middle-income family with a child born in 2012 can expect to spend about $241,080 ($301,970 adjusted for projected inflation) for food, shelter, and other necessities associated with child-rearing expenses over the next 17 years. Those costs can quickly add up if you decide to have another baby (or more).

Remember, all of the pre-birth expenses that you were on the hook for before the birth of your first child still apply to your second. There are doctor visits and ultrasounds you'll have to pay for (depending on your insurance). Luckily, you can save on items like baby books and maternity wear. And of course, baby gear.

efore you consider having a second child, you should first take stock of your current financial situation. Consider these questions:

  • How much debt do you currently owe?
  • How will having a second child affect your finances in the short term? In the long term?
  • How will having another child change your lifestyle?
  • Can you afford to take maternity leave?
  • Who will watch the kids if you and your mate both plan to work?
  • Can you reuse baby gear (or is your firstborn still using it)?
  • Can your household budget afford another body?
  • Do you have enough space for another child? If not, can you afford to move?
  • If you're putting money away for college, can you afford to save for another kid?

Here are a few tips to prepare yourself financially for a second child:

Establish a new budget
Make no doubt about it, having a second child will cost you more money. Hopefully you're keeping a budget of your expenses already. Add to that budget all the costs associated with having a second child, including diapers, new baby items, etc. Calculate the financial impact that a second child will have on your pocketbook. See where you can cut back in other areas of your budget.

Chances are that you've bought (or received) some really good baby gear because of the birth of your first child. Unless you've waited years and years to have a second baby, all that stuff is still good enough for baby No. 2. Clothes, baby monitors, and some toys should be safe for your second baby to use. When it comes to things like car seats or cribs, though, be sure to check for expiration dates and product recalls. If you have doubts, buy new. Your child's safety trumps all.

Rethink new purchases
Before buying new items for your first child, think about their durability. Can the item in question potentially be passed onto your second child? You'll get more bang for your buck if you purchase things that you can "hand down" to your second child.

Plan out and prepare meals
Meal time can sometimes be crazy time when you have multiple mouths to feed. Prepare food in advance that you can freeze. Buy bulk items. You might find comfort in planning meals ahead.

Buy in bulk
Because you've already experienced raising a newborn, you know how much you'll be spending on baby items like diapers or formula. So be sure to watch out for deals and buy in bulk when possible.

Get your first kid adjusted
Your first child may experience a wide range of emotions knowing that he or she is going to have a sibling. Your firstborn might feel jealousy, misbehave, or throw tantrums. These behaviors can tire you out and cost you valuable time. Prepare your little one by emphasizing the important role that an older sibling plays. Let him or her pick out items for the newborn's room, devote special time to your firstborn, and talk about what to expect when the second baby arrives.

Consider child care
Who currently watches your firstborn if both you and your mate work? Can you afford to pay more for child care? Chances are you will get a discount for enrolling two kids into child care, but it's still an increased expense. Would family members be able to help?

Don't forget when you file your taxes that you will be eligible for a number of benefits because you have a second child.

Don't be afraid to ask for help
Friends and family members can help you ease into the experience of having a second child, so invite them to. You don't have to do it all on your own.

This article Tips on Financially Preparing for a Second Child originally appeared on My Bank Tracker.

Take advantage of this little-known tax "loophole"
Recent tax increases have affected nearly every American taxpayer. But with the right planning, you can take steps to take control of your taxes and potentially even lower your tax bill. In our brand-new special report "The IRS Is Daring You to Make This Investment Now!," you'll learn about the simple strategy to take advantage of a little-known IRS rule. Don't miss out on advice that could help you cut taxes for decades to come. Click here to learn more.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (0)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2961908, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 8/31/2015 11:58:13 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...


MyBankTracker is an independent resource that helps consumers make smarter banking and money decisions.

Today's Market

updated 2 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 16,528.03 -114.98 -0.69%
S&P 500 1,972.18 -16.69 -0.84%
NASD 4,776.51 -51.82 -1.07%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes