If you and your partner have decided to start a family together, that’s huge, and congratulations. Coming to this decision is one thing, but what comes after? To help with this process, we’ve compiled three pieces of expert advice for couples considering having a baby that covers finances, home renovations, and health concerns to have checked out, so keep reading to learn more.
1. Your Finances
Parenthood really redefines personal finance, so avoid any financial hardships along the line, start planning early. One way to manage your financial situation is by working towards eliminating debt. You should also make a plan to have at least three month’s worth of living expenses saved in an emergency savings account. This will help you cover the cost of child care, medical insurance, and other miscellanea.
If you need help with your finances (resolving credit card debt, improving your credit score, credit counseling, college tuition debt resolution), Citizens Debt Relief offers exceptional personal finance tools that can help you get out of debt, or at least establish a monthly debt settlement plan. Being a debt relief company means that they’ll also understand your unique financial situation, and will therefore help you establish the exact amount you need to pay each month to become debt-free.
2. Your Home
Another thing you’ll need to think about when getting ready for a baby is whether you have the space in your house for a child. If this is your first baby, chances are you’ll need a nursery or a designated space for the baby in your home. Once you’ve decided on what part of the home you’ll designate as the nursery, put together a renovation schedule/plan.
If you’re a pet parent, you should know that pets suffer from a number of phobias and anxieties which can be triggered by loud noise, going to the vet, certain household appliances, and new people, to mention a few. As a pet owner, it’s important to note that the loud noise from home renovations and the constant stream of strangers (contractors, electricians, HVAC crew) throughout your home can be a trigger for anxious dogs.
Helping your pet cope with noise is a great way to help reduce some of your pet’s anxiety. For starters, introduce your pet to the contractors. Once your pup is accustomed to your contractor’s voice, it’ll help keep your pet calm during the day if they already have a sense of who they are. Another way to calm your pet’s fear is by using a white noise machine to drown out some of the construction noise.
You can also try acclimating the dog to the source of the noise. Some pups are afraid of crying babies, so if you notice this, try giving your dog a treat before the baby cries to help create a positive association for your pup. Alternatively, if you’re about to experience a thunderstorm, or you expect a fireworks display, prepare a safe space in your home for your pet to retreat to. This could be a room with a covered crate or a room that has no windows. The aim here is to keep them away from loud noise.
Renovation projects can bring out harmful allergens, air pollutants, and mold, which are particularly harmful to pregnant women. To avoid exposing yourself to unpleasant odors, plan to start renovations as soon as you make the decision to have a baby. If you’re planning a paint job, ensure that the area is well ventilated and that you’re using an organic, water-based paint brand. Avoid lead and oil-based paint brands as these are loaded with toxic volatile compounds.
Additionally, ensure that the renovation area is well sealed off from the rest of the house, to limit exposure to particulate matter. Once the renovations are complete, clean up the area to get rid of any dust, and harmful debris that may be left behind. The best way to ensure that your home is dust-free is by having a professional HVAC technician clean your air ducts. According to the professionals at Oasis Cleaning and Heating, three reasons why regular duct cleaning is essential is because it helps reduce the levels of air pollutants, prevent health issues, and increase your HVAC system’s lifespan.
3. Your Medical Histories
Lastly, you and your partner should have a conversation to discuss your medical histories. Find out if any family member in your partner’s family has a genetic disorder (Cystic fibrosis, down syndrome, hemophilia) to see find out if there are any health issues you should know about. Also, make an appointment to see your doctor at least three months before you start trying to conceive to make sure you’re up to date on your vaccinations.
Based on your ethnicity, your doctor may also recommend genetic testing to rule out health problems and your predisposition to miscarriages, infertility, or a birth defect that may be recessive during an earlier pregnancy.