Budgeting Tips for First Time Moms

Budgeting Tips for First Time Moms from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

There is nothing more amazing than bringing home that little tiny bundle of joy, and first-time moms are in absolute heaven when they gaze down at that tiny life they’ve just given birth to. However, many aren’t prepared for the extra costs associated with having a baby, and when the bills start piling up, it’s time to rethink the family budget. Whether you are a single parent or in a two-parent household, there are some things you should understand about just how much that new baby adds to your expenses annually. It’s probably time to take a realistic look at your budget to compensate for some of those often unforeseen costs associated with newborns.

Carefully Monitor Your Spending Habits

One of the biggest roadblocks you may encounter is not truly understanding just how much it costs to raise a child in today’s economy. As of the latest report issued by the United States Department of Agriculture, it costs almost $13,000 extra during the first year of a baby’s life. It is now said that it is over $233,000 dollars to raise a child until they are 18 years of age! Think about that for a moment. That statistic was issued four years ago, in 2015, so it can be safely assumed that this amount is higher yet today. This means that you should really, really pay attention to every dollar spent so that you can better plan what budget you have set out for yourself.

Beware Impulse Shopping

Another ‘mistake’ so many first-time moms make is to fall prey to impulse shopping! They see something they like and want it for their baby. Unfortunately, many times that product didn’t perform as imagined, and it’s literally money down the drain, as in the case of baby food or formula, for example. The savvy new mom knows how to look for free baby samples packs online so that they can try things before going out and spending money they really don’t have to spend. You can try things to see if they are suitable for your child and also take advantage of those freebies, which will certainly help you spend less money. Many come with coupons that will save you even more money on future purchases, and that’s a perk too!

When it comes to basic necessities for your baby like diapers and milk, you can save more money if you purchase them in bulk or in large containers. If you are patient, you can wait for a big sale day at your local store, such as the Black Friday Sale at Target, when discounts are usually bigger. 

A Truthful Examination of Wants vs. Needs

Once you know exactly how much money you really have to work with, it’s time to set out a family budget. Obviously, important bills come first, such as shelter, food, and utilities. Any leftover income can be allocated to other ‘needs’ and always should be before getting to those wants. Unfortunately, here is where so many first-time moms fall prey once again to that impulse shopping trait. You may think you ‘need’ something but do you really? Can you make do with what you have, or is it safer to have a new one of whatever it is you are considering? In fact, if you are honest with yourself, that particular thing may be used once and set aside when the novelty wears off. The best budgeting advice you can be given is an honest look at wants vs. needs. So, you’ve come this far and are faced with expenses you hadn’t been prepared for. No one truly knows just how expensive it is to bring a child into this 21st-century world until they’ve actually done it. That budget being referred to should be started months before the baby arrives and in this way, you may even be better prepared for those previously unexpected expenses. Take an honest look at the loss of income you will probably experience, and also don’t forget to calculate childcare when it’s time to return to work. Yes, it will mean some sacrifices along the way, but that little tiny life you are now holding in your arms is well worth the sacrifices, no matter what the cost.

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