25 Sep Baby’s Coming: Time to Admin Your Life
With a baby on the way, it’s time to get your life admin all set.
Those last pregnancy weeks when, let’s face it, you’re not super-mobile, are a great time to sort your life admin. Don’t put it off and pay ‘the lazy tax’!
Build a tribe of service providers around you so you’re ready when the baby comes!
Airtasker – have you tried it yet? It might save your sanity, maybe your marriage. Settle on an Airtasker you like and rely on them for everything from emergency pharmacy trips for reflux treatment to scoring Size 000 onesies at Kmart when it’s too hard to get out of the house with the crying baby.
Sign up with a frozen meal delivery service and get some casseroles waiting in the freezer. Look into mobile hairdressers, beauty therapists, masseurs – even car mechanics and vets will come to you.
Stay on the grid.
You’ll probably be more housebound, so plan to keep in touch with friends and family online.
Strengthen your social media networks.
Make sure you have the right Internet connection, and work out the most cost-effective way to connect. Sign up to Skype if you haven’t already.
Upgrade your private health insurance to a family policy.
If you didn’t upgrade your health insurance to cover pregnancy a full 12 months before getting pregnant, it’s too late to have your baby privately (unless you can cover the total cost yourself), says Laura Crowden, Corporate Affairs Manager with iSelect. But it’s important to start thinking about what happens when the baby arrives.
“Be sure that the baby is covered. And look for a policy that suits this new stage of your own lives. Chances are, your cover was more basic in the past. Your partner and you may have had separate policies in the past because it was more cost-effective. When you’re trying to conceive a baby, it makes sense to upgrade the female partner, but once you have the baby, go on a family policy – it’s always cheaper than a single parent policy and a separate single policy.”
“Some health funds require you to add the child before birth, which can cover late pregnancy and birth complications; others give you a three-month window to add the baby to your policy,” says Laura. “Give them a call as that can differ by fund and policy.”
Look for ways to cut back.
As you’ll probably be looking at cutting back to one income or a reduced second income, and you’ll be forking out for things like car-seats, cots and nappies, look for ways to reduce expenditure.
Assess your fixed costs like credit card interest rates, car insurance (especially if you’ve bought a new family-size car), home & contents insurance and electricity account with your new circumstances in mind. iSelect’s Laura says that energy contracts are pretty black-and-white, because it’s generally just a conversation about price.
“Along the eastern seaboard, you can sign up to heavily discounted plans, but they’ll usually expire after two years and then you’ll probably be automatically rolled over to a higher-priced contract. Scoring a better energy deal is a really easy way to cut back; you can do it in 15 minutes on the phone through us. It costs nothing.”
And if you do plan to go back up to two incomes, figure in the cost of childcare when you do.
Renegotiate your home loan.
It’s time-consuming, but well worth it.
This is where you can save tens of thousands over a loan’s lifetime.
Maybe you used to make a higher than minimum repayment, but with the baby you want to go down to the minimum. Look at how you could reduce costs with your own loan, and compare what other lenders offer.
Get life insurance.
A lot of people insure possessions but a baby is something more valuable, iSelect’s Laura points out.
Life insurance is an umbrella term for four things, she explains:
- life cover, in the event of your or your partner’s death
- trauma cover for serious medical conditions
- total and permanent disability (TPD)
- income protection, for when you or your partner can’t work for a sustained period
“Your super may have some protection but it probably isn’t sufficient,” explains Laura. “It can be a scary topic to discuss, but don’t put your head in the sand. Talk about it before the baby arrives when you have more headspace to plan for the unexpected.”
If the worst were to happen….
Another scary topic, but one you should talk face, is what happens if you both pass away suddenly. Who would look after your children? Appoint a guardian.
State Trustees in Victoria says there are five things to consider: the guardian’s financial circumstances, their religious outlook and values, whether the guardian already has or is planning to have children, what location and lifestyle transition it would mean for your child, and whether your child likes them.
And don’t forget to cull!
Do a spring clean so when the baby comes (with all its paraphernalia), there are a few empty cupboards and shelves around the place!
iSelect is Australia’s Life Admin Store and helps you take care of all the boring but important stuff in life. They compare and sell providers offering insurance (health, home & contents, car, life, travel, pet), electricity and gas, credit cards, home loans, broadband, and mobile phones and phone plans. This post is brought to you by iSelect.
Image by: Arnel Hasanovic