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It can be hard to imagine how expensive it will be once you have children, but if both parents are working and a baby comes a long there will have to be a lot of changes. The child will need constant care and whether that comes was from one parent, is shared between both or someone is paid to do it, it can be quite a financial juggle.

Obviously cost is not the only factor as you will have to decide whether you want to parent your child full time or have someone help out. You may not like the idea of leaving your child with someone else, whether an au pair or nanny or at a nursery and would rather looks after them yourself. You may have a willing grandparent or other relative that may be willing to help out and you may be happier to leave the baby with them.

Working from home could be an option, however, it is not that easy. Employers are not always that willing to allow their staff to work from home but it is worth asking. Of course it will very much depend on what you do as a job. It could be possible to give up your job and find something online to do as well, but it depends on where your skills lie, what you want to do and what is available. You will also need to find time to do the work, which could be very difficult with a child to look after at the same time.

Some parents share the child care. They both work part time and take turns in looking after the children. This can work well if both parents want to get actively involved in caring for their child and if both can find part time work which will earn enough to give the household a good income.

It can be worth thinking of ways to bring in income which does not involve working. You could perhaps rent out a spare room, rent your driveway or garage or even your attic space. Obviously this depends on how much space you have and you will of course need more space as you will have a new member of the family.

It is worth seeing whether your employer has any incentives for parents, to help with the cost of child care or even childcare facilities. It is possible to get childcare vouchers sometimes as well and there is government help as well, which could help. It is worth looking into all the benefits that you can get once you become a parent because they could make a significant difference

You may also be able to cut down on things that you spend money on in order to be able to make the childcare costs easier to pay for. It is worth looking at everything that you buy and seeing whether there are cheaper alternatives. You could switch suppliers, insurers, supermarkets to save money. You will be going out less in the evenings so that will save money but you may also need to think about buying less things for yourself or the home. Once children are at school, the cost of childcare is significantly cheaper and so you will be able to afford more then as while they are young they can tend to do damage to furniture, walls, your clothing etc so getting new things may be a waste of time.