Financially Healthy: Steps to Take Before Starting a Family

When talking about prioritizing the health and wellness of your family, couples often neglect the financial aspect of this. There’s no way that you can enjoy this new chapter of your life to the fullest if you’re not doing well money-wise. Just imagine the ill effects that stress will have on your health and your relationships. The need to cover debts and bills will deprive you of sleep and much-needed time with your little ones, and that’s just the beginning of it.

This is why you must plan for your family’s financial health as early as now. Maybe you’re just about to get married, or you’re already in the second trimester of your pregnancy. Spend the next couple of months setting your finances to alleviate whatever financial stress you’re currently experiencing and reduce the blow once your baby arrives.

Here are four of the essential steps that you can start with.

Timing Is Crucial

Create a timeline of the next two to three years of your life and mark any major life decisions that you want to make. It could be changing jobs, moving to a new neighborhood, or building your dream home. If any of them fall within the first six months or year of your child’s birth, then you’re putting yourself at risk. This is true not only financially but also mentally and physically.

Never underestimate how fast your child will grow and the day-to-day challenges that come with coping with it. You’ll want to reserve your spare money for unexpected expenses like hospitalizations and new gear that will improve your lifestyle.

Once you’ve successfully reached the one-year mark, then you’ll feel more confident to invest in your dream home, for example, and reach out to general building contractors. Several neighborhoods you’re eyeing may have new opportunities that are suitable for your family. Now’s the time to consider the major decisions you put on hold and maybe adjust them for better results.

Consider Estate Planning

When you hear of estate planning, you often think of death, disability, and the other unpleasant scenarios your family might face. This is why parents often push it back until the last moment and end up risking their family’s future.

The truth is that estate planning is one of the best gifts you can give your spouse and children, and you have to take steps towards it while you’re still well. You’ll want to make sure that you have life insurance with sufficient coverage, you have a will in place, and a guardian for your children, and a healthcare proxy. Cover all your bases and work with a reputable estate planning lawyer. This is one of the best means to protect your family’s health and wellness even in the direst of situations.

pregnant woman

Take Care of Your Parental Leave

Being a new parent is hard not only for you but also for your professional career. If you want to maximize your parental leave without causing trouble at work, then it’s best to plan well for it.

Speak to your manager in the months leading up to your baby’s arrival. This is important regardless if you’re the mother or the father. Having multiple conversations with your employer about how your parental leave will impact your team will give everybody the space and time needed to make adjustments.

Perhaps your absence will mean that one of your colleagues cannot go on vacation or take leaves simultaneously. Maybe the entire team’s schedule must be adjusted, or deadlines must be pushed up to optimize your availability. Whatever it is, work it out with your boss and colleagues so that you can truly enjoy time with your newborn.

Don’t Ignore Your Retirement Plan

As with every investment, the truth remains that the sooner you start, the bigger the benefits. You also have to consider that pushing it off year after year in place of your other needs will only create problems in the future.

The best plan of action is to secure your retirement plan without compromising the rest of your obligations. This might mean making adjustments in your monthly contributions, but a little less is better than none.

Now Is the Time to Act

Minding your family’s financial health now will pay dividends in your future. As soon as you get these four points to take care of, you can build up on them by making other worthwhile investments.

Take your time planning and canvassing your options, and don’t be afraid to start slow. What’s important is that you begin now to secure your family’s health and wellness in the long run.

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