While adults inevitably need to pay close attention to their finances, this becomes even more of a concern when kids enter the picture. After all, your cost of living is bound to rise as your family grows. Moreover, you also have to think far ahead into the future and ensure that your family is taken care of in case you get sick, lose your job, or worse.

Indeed, there’s no question that financial planning is an indelible part of parenting. Here’s how you can start.

Buy instead of rent.

Shelter is counted as one of the most important human needs, and it is your responsibility as a parent to make sure that your entire family is safe and comfortable in an appropriate home. This then begs the question of whether to buy or rent. Zillow explains either option does have its own virtues, buying your own home still comes out on top. Not only do you enjoy the flexibility and privacy of having a home of your own, but there’s also a sense of accomplishment to it, too.

And of course, your own home is an asset, making it a great investment. However, there are also some considerations to think about before you take the leap and purchase a property, such as your down payment.

Get to know the basics about down payments. For instance, conventional loans normally require 20 percent down, while an FHA loan may ask for as little as 3 percent. Moreover, mortgage insurance will be required for down payments of less than 20 percent. With a clear understanding, you’ll be able to determine how much you need to save and what kind of loan you can expect when you invest in a home of your own.

Save for the future.

It’s a fact that your child’s college education will be one of the most significant financial hurdles you will ever face in life. In fact, Forbes notes college costs are rising 8 times faster than wages. Needless to say, it’s a very smart move to start saving up for your children’s education as early as you can. You can even go beyond the normal savings account and consider the many methods in which you can save for your child’s education.

Equally important is your own retirement savings. This may be something that’s not at the forefront of your mind when you are young, but it’s highly recommended that you start putting away money for your retirement as early as your 20s. This ensures that your future care and health care needs are met when the time comes without putting an undue burden on your children. Do some number crunching and make sure you are where you need to be.

Invest in insurance.

Of course, life insurance is always a staple when it comes to financial planning. This becomes particularly valuable when you become a parent as you can never guess what life might have in store for you and your family. Having life insurance will ensure that your surviving dependents will be taken care of in the event of your demise, so as Business Insider points out, it’s something that you need in your portfolio, even if you think you don’t.

Furthermore, life insurance is also another thing that you shouldn’t put off for later in life. When you buy insurance young, you are not only covered longer—and, by extension, enjoy valuable peace of mind—but young and healthy applicants can lock in lower premiums.

Suffice it to say, your responsibility as a parent does not end in providing for your family’s basic needs and wants at the moment. Rather, it extends far into the future. So when you become a parent—or even long before—it’s high time to start financial planning.


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