We Added One to Our Family... But How Much to Our Budget?
Time... it really does fly by. After nine months of blog paternity leave, I'm finally back at the keyboard trying to key out some coherent thoughts of what's happened since our family added another human to the mix. First, let me start by saying that Finch is awesome. Rooney is awesome. Having a girl and a boy is awesome. Watching them interact (when Rooney isn't squeezing him so hard he cries) is awesome. My wife is awesome.
All of the real stuff about being a family of four and parents of two is really fun right now for Kelsey and I. And while we don't really think we'll have any more kids, we're enjoying the two little humans we've been given. All that awesomeness costs money though, and has an impact on our monthly budget.
Let's break it down...
I work full-time and Kelsey works 32 hours per week. She has Wednesdays off and keeps the kids at home. It's a great balance for our family to have that mid-week break, for Kelsey to pause her work life and focus on the kids, and for the kids to have a day away from daycare as well. The daycare is on-site where Kelsey works which is uber convenient for pick up and drop off. Plus, she can stop in and peak on them at any point which helps put her mommy-mind at ease.
Downside for Kelsey is that she gets zero time to herself before and after work. So, Sometimes we have to create space for her to have some alone time to recharge.
Our daycare offers a discount for adding a second child, which is great. The tough part for me was remembering how much more expensive it is to send a newborn to daycare vs. a four year old. Yikes! I had forgotten about all the price breaks we've gotten over the years as Rooney aged, and am now looking forward to Finch turning two so we can get another break (Only looking forward to him turning two for monetary reasons... 9 months is a pretty awesome age).
Anyway, we are super blessed with our daycare situation, and I know that we get a good deal for the area, so no complaints.
Budget increase for daycare: $657 per month. (Includes a 15% second child discount)
Yuck... there's probably nothing I hate more than paying for healthcare. Especially when it increased by 17% in 2016. It forced us to look into different options for coverage. Kelsey gets great coverage through her work, but to add a family member onto her plan is expensive. I don't have health insurance offered through my employer so I work with an independent agent to shop around for options. It's cheaper for me to insure myself and the two kids on our own plan and for Kelsey to take advantage of the health benefits with her employer.
We decided to move to a HSA plan this year. Which means we're able to save a little bit on our monthly premium, and have the option to save money into an account tax-free (up to $6,750 in 2016). The downside is that it's a high deductible plan and we are responsible for 100% of the healthcare costs up to the deductible. It was a gamble we lost this year. It's only March and we've already met Finch's individual deductible thanks to an ER visit and two days in the hospital. Long-term, no doubt it will be the way to go for us, but this first year, the healthcare and insurance industry wins.
Inside our HSA plan, well child visits and yearly physicals are covered, but we have to pay for everything else. So, we're budgeting to contribute the max amount this year.
Health care increase in our budget from last year is $450 per month.
This category is definitely more discretionary from month to month as needs come and go. Babies change so quickly in the first year. I guess the most constant expenses for us are diapers and wipes.
Again, the diapers and wipes are the main expense, and Rooney has since graduated from pull ups all together in the last six months, so while she is 100% potty trained now, we're spending more on Finch's diapers... man this budget gets more complicated with more kids, huh?
Anyway, we have a category for "baby" on our budget that has been there for the past four years. When Finch was born, we added $20 per month to it.
Finch is now eating baby food, but we just absorb that into our family food budget for the month and haven't had to increase that since he has been born. We did increase our food budget while Kelsey was pregnant.
Kelsey is in charge of the kids' clothing budget because Snappy Casual. We added a clothing budget for Finch, but it only added $5 to our budget per month. I know that doesn't see like a lot, but really, he gets clothed very well everyday, and most days, a few different times (blowouts).
It's also a shift as Rooney gets older, her clothes last longer (she isn't out-growing them at near the clip that Finch is). But, we've always managed to be blessed with great hand-me-downs that make up most of our kids' wardrobes. The monthly budget helps us fill in the gaps. And Kelsey has been able to sell some of the out-grown clothes and helps supplement our budget as well.
We don't really buy toys for our kids. They have enough other people in their lives (grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.) that have given them plenty of toys over the years. We really actually need to purge some things at this point. So, aside from Christmas or birthdays, we're not adding this into our budget anytime soon.
Having a second child added roughly $1,150 per month to our budget. It's been a stretch for sure. There's not much if any margin from month to month, but we're making it work. We've had to pause some of our longer term goals for now, but hope to get back to them in the next year or so.
All this financial talk is great, but seriously, we are loving being the parents of two. Now that Finch is finally sleeping through the night, we're able to really enjoy this special time in our lives.