Most people prefer the number two as an ideal number of having children.
Adding a new family member is always exciting. However, adding a child to your family is like starting a new family itself. So, before planning your second kid, you need to consider financial aspects as well.
Many of us don’t agree with the fact that having a second child is tougher than the first one. Trust me; it's difficult to follow the same financial path that you might have followed while having your first born.
Here are some things you need to consider:
Money is the biggest aspect you must consider before having a newborn. To raise a healthy child, you must bear fixed expenses like clothing, shelter, food, and others. Yes, it’s true that some of your expenses won’t cost as much as you had to spend on your first child. For example, you already have the baby cot, clothes and so on. But, at the same time, your daycare cost will increase.
As per USDA estimates, a two-parent family with one kid spend around 27% of their monthly income on their kid. But, with two kids, a family usually spends around 41% of monthly earning. The percentage increase to about 47% when a two-parent family has three children.
Start or check your emergency fund. Kids are accident prone, so must accumulate a decent amount for any medical emergencies. Three to six months’ worth of living expenses should be arranged to tackle any odd situation.
Apart from these, both of you need to answer some questions: Will both of you continue with your job, or one of you will quit temporarily?
If one of you decide to quit the job or work part-time, then it may have an effect on your financial situation. Delaying your career can cost you further. On the other hand, if both of you continue with your jobs, then you’ll have to spend in daycare.
Planning for leaves
Both of you need to find out your companies’ policies and state laws with respect to maternity and paternity leaves. Inquire how much time you and your partner can get off work and whether or not you’d be paid during that period.
If your company has less than 50 employees, then it’s not a mandatory FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act) leave. So, check out! If you have to get off work without payment for some days, then you’ll have to plan for unpaid days, and need to allocate your finances accordingly.
Health insurance and probable expenses
Having a health insurance policy doesn’t mean that it’ll cover all your medical expenses. Also, check with your health insurance provider without asking your friends and family members. A policy might have covered your friend’s maternity expenses, but that doesn’t mean that it’ll cover yours, too.
Every plan is unique. So, check out with your health insurance provider what you’ll be responsible for and when payments will be due. Inquire about co-insurance, co-pays, deductibles along with specialty tests and out-of-pocket costs.
The ever growing cost of having a baby changes its mode at the time when your child becomes toddler or goes to school. The expenses just shifts focus from diapers to school goodies, education, etc. So, you must also plan for the coming days and not just the first few years.
The right time and proper health
Pregnancy is stressful irrespective of immense joy attached to it. A woman, with previous complications or more than 35 years of age, should think twice before planning for a second baby. So, if you or your wife belongs to this category, then you should consult a doctor and have an idea about the potential risks involved.
Many mothers want to have two babies close together so that they can consolidate the nap-timing and diaper-changing years and get over with these chores at once. However, it requires more efficient hands-on work and stressful time.
Your peer group
If your and your partner’s peer groups consist of parents with multiple children, then you may have to face questions like whether or not you’re planning another baby or whether or not your kid is a single child.
You have to think whether or not your little one will be lonely after he/she grows up and whether or not both of you will be a burden for him/her at your old age. However, these are not sole reasons and whether your child will be lonely, or you’ll be a burden depend on other aspects, too.
The family relationship
Bringing more children into your family will flourish your life. The house full of giggles and cry will surprise you every time you return home from work.
However, pregnancy and kids put an effect on your relationships and your daily routines that you've maintained since your marriage. Right from the time you had your first child, you have considered many issues for building up your kids' personalities along with yours.
But, adding another child will not only increase your work, but it’ll increase your stress, too. If you consult those people who have more than one child, they will surely confirm that being the parents of two kids is not a cup of tea.
Benefits of having a single child
- More one-on-one time with your kid - You can spend more time with one child and won’t have to split your time between multiple children.
- You can enjoy more free time - As parents, you can have more free time. You can maintain the perfect balance between the sacrifices you make and immense joy your kid gives you.
- More opportunities - You can devote more time and money to your child. So, you can provide more opportunities for him/her to explore extracurricular activities.
- No squabbling between the siblings - You won’t have to deal with sibling squabbling. So, there will be less chaos, and both of you will be a much calmer mom and dad.
- Financial planning is easier - It is always easy to do the financial planning for bringing up one child, like planning for his/her college.
Benefits of having a second baby
- Tax benefit - However, you get tax benefits if you have a second child. Usually, you can get back about $1,500 tax benefit for having a second child.
- Saving on large supplies - When you have a second child, you already have certain things like the crib, toys, etc. So, you don’t have to buy them.
- Reusing clothes - The babies in the initial months can wear hand-me-downs. If you have two boys and two girls, then your second child can wear the clothes of his/her brother/sister.
- Kids can spend time together - You don’t have to shout as much as you might have to if two kids are squabbling in your family.
- Appreciate your decision in the long run - Initially, you’ll feel a bit pressure both financially and mentally. But, over the long term, you might appreciate the second go-round more.
It can be concluded by saying that you need to consider a lot before becoming a dad or mom again. In the end, it is up to you. It’s your family, so you'll need to make the choice for your and your family’s future.