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Financial Advice | Falling Pregnant

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Financial Advice

If you’ve never been good at saving money and your credit card is maxed out on the latest designer outfits and evenings out with the girls, now’s the time to start counting your pennies. Babies are expensive little creatures.

From your hospital stay, to nappies and nursery school fees, you’re going to have to bite the bullet and lock your credit card in the safe.

Before you decide to have a baby, phone your medical aid company to establish what benefits you’re entitled to. Many of these insurances have specialized maternity policies that give you wonderful benefits.

Talk to your employer about your company’s maternity benefits. Some companies provide fully paid maternity leave, but stipulate that you work for a set period of time, once you return to the office. Most companies however only pay a percentage of your monthly salary, and often some companies don’t pay at all. You are entitled to claim from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), but more often than not, you’ll only get paid out several months after your baby has been born.

Who can resist going shopping in a baby store, especially when there are so many cute things to buy? Buying just the basic supplies for your baby could set you back about R10,000. A basic wooden cot costs at least R1,000, a pram costs anything between R1,000 and R4,000 and then there’s the linen, toys and gorgeous little outfits that you won’t be able to resist.

It’s not a bad idea to start buying nappies in advance. Cloth nappies, which are all the rage these days, are also much cheaper in the long run and better for the environment. Stock up on shampoo’s, creams and other toiletries and consider buying socks, vests and baby grows on a monthly basis.
Your hospital stay isn’t going to be cheap either. Depending on the type of medical aid that you’re on, you may have to start saving money, especially if you want a private or semi-private room. Many private hospitals charge more than the medical aid rate and you’ll get a nasty surprise in the post once baby is born.

A private hospital will probably charge you anything between R7,000 to R12,000 for a normal vaginal delivery. Caesarians are much more expensive; costing between R16,000 and R22,000. That doesn’t include your Gynaecologist, Paediatrician and Anesthetist. The doctors will probably charge you an extra R5,000 to R7,000.

In the society in which we live, very few families are able to survive on one income, so you’ll probably decide to go back to work when your baby’s around 4 months old. Someone has to look after him, and you’ll either end up paying a Nanny to look after your baby or you’ll send him to a crèche. Nannies cost in the region of R1,000 to R2,500 per month. Depending on the area in which you live, Nursery School fees are usually around R2,000 per month.

Now that you’ve choked on your skinny cappuccino and you’re starting to get heart palpitations, don’t stress! You don’t need to become a pauper. If you work on a financial plan of action and cut down on unnecessary, major luxuries you’ll be fine when baby arrives.
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