The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

July 27, 2013

'Big Joe' Clark: Are you financially ready to have a baby?

Let’s just cut right to the chase – no, you are unlikely to EVER be financially ready to have a baby. And that’s OK! Very few couples, at least young couples, understand the financial responsibility and undertaking of having a child.

As you probably know, most of Britain has been having baby fever as Prince William and Duchess Kate recently gave birth to their first son. As expected the royal couple were put up in the Lindo Wing of St. Mary’s Hospital, which is where Princess Diana delivered Prince William and Prince Harry and is considered the Rolls Royce of hospital rooms. All in all, it’s reported to have cost the royal family $15,000 to deliver in the Lindo Wing. Sounds like a lot of money doesn’t it? Well not so fast.

According to research obtained by Elisabeth Rosenthal of the New York Times by Truven Health Analytics, the average total price charged for pregnancy and newborn care in the U.S. is $30,000! Truven reported that since 1996, costs for delivering a baby have tripled. So the question becomes, have you checked your insurance coverage of maternity care?

It’s not realistic to assume you’ll be able to save enough money in advance of having a baby to cover all of the costs associated with having children. Data from BabyCenter.com shows that the total estimated cost of raising a child in the Midwest from birth until age 18, including paying for a public college, would be $250,360-$465,010. If you were to ask a parent how they manage, most would simply say “we make it work.” But closing your eyes and hoping little Tommie becomes a basketball star and Susie gets a full academic scholarship is not the best way to plan for their future.

While the costs seem high, it’s not impossible to keep from going into debt while raising a child. The best way to achieve financial success when other people (spouses or children) are involved is through open dialogue. Many families simply don’t communicate about their finances, and in a world with unprecedented expenses and the normal surprises, communication will be key to happy relationships. Money doesn’t grow on trees and we need to make certain we all understand you simply can’t do it all. Setting a budget and following it from day one can help keep new parents on track and off on the right foot as the midnight feedings and diaper changing draws their focus away from their other important matters. It’s also often a good idea to setup a 529 account for the little one. Just like planning for retirement, the earlier you start planning to pay for a college education the easier the burden becomes and the quicker a habit can be formed in saving a set amount each month or year.

Having a baby is an exciting time and can open your eyes to a whole new world. I wish William and Kate the very best in their new adventure.

Joseph “Big Joe” Clark, whose column is published Sundays, is a certified financial planner. He can be reached at bigjoe@yourlifeafterwork.com or 640-1524.

1
Text Only
Local Business
  • sheryl myers Daleville gets first look at reservoir project The Imagine Mounds Lake project made a stop in Daleville on Thursday as residents came out to ask questions and see how the proposed reservoir might affect their lives.

    August 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • NWS - HB0821 - Warner Bodies - JC 1 Elwood welcomes manufacturing company Warner Bodies

    The relocation of a manufacturing plant to Madison County brings both revitalization and new jobs to the area.

    August 20, 2014 3 Photos

  • Historic barn tour and workshop Sept. 19 Across Indiana, barns of all ages and types have been successfully rehabilitated for modern farming and other uses. On Sept. 19, Indiana Landmarks offers BARN AGAIN!, a workshop to help owners maximize use of vintage barns.

    August 20, 2014

  • NWS - HB0820 - Kennedy Google- JC 2 Google X captures heart, imagination of AU professor After spending the summer working at Google's secret research laboratory in Mountain View, California, Scott Kennedy has decided to stay.

    August 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • Residential electric rates increasing by 9 percent The electric rates for residential customers of Anderson Municipal Light & Power will increase by 8.96 percent for the final three months of the year.

    August 19, 2014

  • Indiana experiences growth in manufacturing sector Known for its strength in traditional and progressive manufacturing, Indiana gained more than 5,500 jobs in the manufacturing sector last month and has maintaining a 5.9 percent unemployment rate from June.

    August 19, 2014

  • NWS - HB0819 - Mounds Reservoir - JC 1 People get a view of proposed reservoir

    Local residents are being given the opportunity to discuss the benefits and challenges that face the development of the proposed Mounds Lake reservoir.

    August 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • FEA - HB0819 - Mommy Monday - JC 3 Mommy and me time

    Babette Bargo of Anderson said she brought her daughter to Community Hospital’s first Mommy Monday to meet other mothers and children after her sister-in-law told her about the event.

    August 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Reservoir would reduce tax revenues If the proposed Mounds Lake reservoir becomes a reality by 2021, local taxing units could lose an estimated $1.9 million in revenues.

    August 18, 2014

  • Ambulance provider to leave communities

    Area hospitals say they are not sure what to make of Rural/Metro Corp.’s announcement to end ambulance services in some Indiana communities.

    August 18, 2014

Stocks
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide