Q. My partner told me last night she is pregnant – I was thrilled. But then we sat down and started thinking down the road – how do we plan… how much is having our first baby going to cost us ? I remember you saying on radio that the 3rd level cost for one child alone is over € 42,000. The enormity of our good news got to us. Have you any advice ? Paul – Clondalkin Dublin 22

A. Congratulations Paul ! Sure you will have to make some sacrifices and at times, it will be a hard slog but worth every minute of it. There are 5 main areas you need to think about :

  1. Space – separate room, certainly after 3 months so that all three of you can catch some sleep. This may require an extension, renovation, even a move to a larger home. Income and your cash flow will dictate what you can or cannot afford.
  2. Baby things – you will need a cot, pram, baby clothes, nappies and babyfood etc.  Do you buy this from savings, borrow or from cash flows ? For a budget template form, email me – jlowe@moneydoctors.ie
  3. Child-minding – essential to run through the various options – crèche, au pair, professional child-minder in the home – before your baby arrives as they all cost.
  4. Education – your children could cost € 80,000 + each to educate them to include 3rd level. You need to plan this – start with a Regular Saver account saving between € 100 and € 1000 for 12 regular months attracting a current best rate of 2% pa ) if you can.
  5. Protection – with the safe arrival of your first born, you both have extra responsibilities. Life cover should be considered and even income protection, in case either or both parents are unable to work financially.

Just a little matter of planning – well done again and best wishes.


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