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A financial checklist for expecting moms

Your life is about to change. You are both excited and nervous. Having a baby is a lot of responsibility. Becoming a mom is something that you have always wanted. You've plotted out the nursery. You have a running list of baby names that you have narrowed down. Loved ones have slowly stocked you up on adorable onesies and soft blankets.

As your baby-bump grows, so does the checklist in your head. You know you have to get the house ready. You know you want to pack a hospital bag, and that some furniture for the nursery needs put together. You also know that you need to really think about your finances and securing the future for your baby.

What to plan before the baby arrives

You should really look at your health insurance. Make sure you understand how your insurance handles the birth of a child. You can draft a budget based on an estimate of your out-of-pocket costs for the delivery. You should also look into the price of diapers, wipes, food and other necessities for your baby. You can draft a budget for these as well. An estimated budget may be helpful for saving and planning out your expenses. Look into leave from work. You and the father may be entitled to leave. You will want to know if you and your spouse will be paid during that time.

What to put on your checklist for after the baby is born

You will want to fill out government forms, and add your child to your health insurance policy. While you are at it, you may consider a life insurance policy for your child. If you have a life insurance policy yourself, you may want to update your beneficiaries to include your child. If you currently have an estate plan, you will want to update the plan to include your child. If you do not have an estate plan, you may consider drafting one in order to secure your child's future in the event of tragedy. You will want to look at the budget plan that you drew up prior to the arrival of your baby and make adjustments as you buy supplies. Continue to budget, and if possible, continue contributing to an emergency savings fund and an education fund for your child.

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