Planning for Expecting Parents

from stillwatergazette.com near Washington County

Starting a family brings joy, stress, excitement and discussions over where to put the bassinet in your house. It brings questions about getting your financial house in order, too. Here’s a financial to-do list before the little bundle arrives.As expecting parents you face a long list of stuff to buy. Along with the wipies and the pretty mobiles, remember to plan your spending, estate and insurance coverage for your new family.Spending and savings plan. The average middle-income couple needs $241,080 to raise a child, not including extras like sports or clubs, private schools and dance classes, to name a few. A quarter of a million dollars per child, even though it hits you over time, means examining all aspects of your family budget.Build your emergency savings fund to three to six months of living expenses. Err on the side of caution especially if only one of you plans to work.Imagine your expenses with diapers, formula and baby food in the mix. Start pricing these items and allow for them in your household budget.Does your vehicle safely accommodate a car seat? Do you need to save for a second or replacement car?This report The U.S. Census Bureau says child care costs skyrocket year after year. Check your local costs of child care whether in daycare groups, individual care or with nannies. Do you or your spouse plan to stay at home? Account for these costs and changes when you sketch out your new financial picture.Start saving for college as early as possible using such accounts as a Coverdell ESA or a 529 plan.Estate planning. No one likes thinking about how parents’ deaths affect a family, but you must prepare and protect yourselves.Draw up a will or review your existing one. Wills ensure that your assets go where you wish; they also allow you to assign an executor to handle your estate and select a guardian for your children.When choosing your children’s guardian, ask yourself who your children feel most comfortable with and who can responsibly control any funds left to the children. Consider the pot

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