If you are thinking of starting a family soon, you probably worry about doing everything right. The good news is that there's no such thing as a perfect parent and kids generally thrive in many different types of households as long as they are loved. However, there are definitely some aspects of having kids and how your life is going to change that you might want to think about.
Money for Education
One thing to think about is saving up for your child's education. College can be expensive. With a 529 savings plan, you can put away money that grows without being taxed, including on withdrawal as long as it is used for education costs. Depending on what state you live in, there may be additional tax advantages.
If you're going to have dependents, it's important to have life insurance as well. To figure out how much life insurance you need, you should calculate how much your family would need annually and for how many years. There are many different types of life insurance policies, and there are advantages and disadvantages to all of them. One thing you might want to keep in mind is whether you want the policy to be an investment. If you purchase term insurance, which expires after a certain amount of time, this will not be the case. However, if you get a permanent plan, as you near retirement, you may be able to sell it through a life settlement. You can review a guide about this entire process.
Many parents feel that it is easier to bring up children when they have family nearby. This is why some people might move to be closer to one set of relatives when they decide they want to have kids. Of course, this all depends on your family dynamic. Not all grandparents are enamored about offering free child care. You may care more about your children growing up close to your best friend's kids instead of those of your siblings. However, whatever form it takes, you should think about what kind of support systems you want and need and the best way to get them.
Another thing to think about is what kind of environment you want your kids to grow up in. There are many differences, as well as advantages and disadvantages to city, suburban and rural settings. Think about your values and the kind of childhood you want them to have. Easy access at an early age to a huge array of cultural opportunities, such as museums and theatre, can be wonderful, but so can growing up in the country or in a quiet suburban area that offers safety and some of the best of the urban and rural life.
You don't have to feel 100% ready to start a family. After all, you've never done it before, so you probably aren't entirely sure what ready looks like. However, some times are better than others. For some parents, considering where they are in their careers can be an important aspect of deciding when they are ready. You'll no doubt be spending quality time with your children as much as possible so being honest about if the rest of your life's obligations can support that is crucial. You might also want to be a homeowner or have other elements in place first.
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