There have been many figures regarding the average cost of raising a child in the UK. You often hear couples say “we will start a family when we can afford to”. Although, if they understood the cost implications, perhaps they wouldn’t. Figures quoted are around £200,000 to £238,000 for one child from birth to 21 years of age.
That is the average price of a 3-Bedroomed, Semi-Detached house today in East Sussex – Average Income varies throughout East Sussex, for example in Hastings, it's around £28,500pa.
Is that the reason that couples are opting to have children later in life? The average age of a female to have a child at this time is 29.5 years. Whereas 40 years ago the average was 24 years. Many parents, especially, ‘working mums’, have careers and naturally, worry about whether they have enough money to bring up a child; and the financial implications of affording a baby on one income is frightening.
Today, many couples are still living at home with one or other set of parents, helping with the cost of babysitters and childcare. Over the years this cost could rise to over £63,000. Although this is not the most expensive outlay – this is Education which could cost up to £71,000 – and that is just ‘regular’ schooling, clubs, outings, uniforms and so forth. This list goes on; another being the time between 18 and 21 years when teenagers go into Further Education. There are many ways, of course, to save on these costs. With one of the most expensive times being the first year (costing around £9,000) with the initial outlay of such items as furniture, pram, cot, clothes and toys, early budgeting is essential. Naturally, these can be reduced by some careful planning and saving. Most first-time parents want to buy the best for their first baby. However, subsequent babies are often the subject of ‘hand-me-downs’ and ‘bargain-buys’.
Good parenting starts with planning for the future; this will reduce serious money worries after having the baby. The key to future goal planning is to discuss your plans with a Lifestyle Financial Planner; addressing specific concerns will give you peace of mind. Alternatively, you can use a baby costs calculator. There are many to choose from online, and they can help you establish how much you will need for your expected addition. So by working out a budget, you can begin making regular savings of what you can easily afford each month. It could make a massive difference by the time your child reaches 21 years of age.
One other thing that no-one likes to think about or consider is a potential catastrophe; if one or other parent were to die in a tragic accident or had a serious illness such as terminal cancer.
Although losing a parent would be upsetting, having protection planning in position would bring peace of mind and greatly assist the remaining parent in surviving financially. Visit a Lifestyle Financial Planner to discuss your options.
Whatever way forward you decide, understand your financial position, have a goal and stick to it. Contact a Lifestyle Financial Planner who will be able to assist you to achieve a Brighter Financial Future.