Starting a Family? Consider These Four Tips First
Starting your family and having kids is a significant milestone for many. According to the ‘Census of Population 2016‘ in Ireland there were 1,218,370 families in the State on Census Night – an increase of 3.3% since 2011, and a rise of 51% since 1996. In the UK, research has revealed that approximately 27.8 million families emerged in the UK in 2020, showing a 5.9% increase over the past ten years.
While having children sounds exciting, it comes with lots of dedication, and you have to be fully prepared to take up more responsibilities. Are you wondering how to get ready to start your family? Here are some tips that are worth considering.
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1. Build Your Finances
In Ireland, research has shown that the cost of raising a child from ‘cradle to college’ costs €105,321. In the UK, and according to the Child Poverty Action Group, couples are expected to spend an average of £74,333 for raising a child to age 18 and £150,000 for total childcare costs.
For these reasons, you should be financially stable to give your family a more comfortable life. You can start by creating a working budget to determine your needs and allocate the required amount. It will also be best to settle your debts and limit your credit card use. Additionally, automating your savings and creating an emergency fund will help you save more money and limit costs. It will be prudent to seek counsel from your financial institution on ways to build your finances.
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2. Get Insured
While you don’t wish for unpleasant situations such as job loss, accident-related disability, or death, life can throw uncertainties your way. For this reason, you may want to get insurance coverage, as it acts as a buffer for these situations and provides financial support to keep your family comfortable while you plan the next course of action.
While there are countless insurance policies to choose from, you can opt for health insurance, auto insurance, life insurance, and disability insurance for a start. You may also want to research various insurance providers to ascertain the best one for you.
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3. Consider Your Health
Before you start your family, it’s vital for you and your partner to be in good health, both physically and mentally. Whether you opt for traditional conception or assisted conception such as IVF, you may want to get your body checked to ensure your baby’s health.
It will be best to let your healthcare givers run tests to determine if you have a medical condition. It’s also advisable to limit your alcohol intake, eat healthy meals, and exercise regularly. You may want to avoid taking OTCs or opioids in large doses and seek medical clearance before taking any medication.
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4. Build Support Systems
Starting a family for the first time might be challenging and overwhelming, which is why you need sound support systems to help you out. Not only will they have a positive influence on you, but they’ll also share helpful tips on how to tackle situations that might arise as you start your family.
Besides, they can provide emotional and mental support, that you might need to help raise your children. You can count on trusted family members, friends, groups, or discussion forums to guide you. However, remember that you decide how to run your family and not pattern yours exactly after others.
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Starting a family is an amazing journey and an exciting milestone. Thinking ahead before you start will help you transition smoothly into family life – it makes life a little easier when you know the right things to do. But it’s rarely going to be smooth sailing – and you can only prepare so much! What’s more, you learn new things as you go along, and it’s from these experiences that you learn, develop and thrive.
Photos by Anna Shvets – CCO Licence