‘The God Doctor’: Lea Has Concerns About the Baby: ‘Can We Afford This?’

The Good Doctor’s Lea Dilallo (Paige Spara) had a ton of questions after she found out she was pregnant. She shared her concerns with Shaun (Freddie Highmore), and one of them had to do with finances. Lea is worried about whether she and Shaun can afford a baby right now. Here’s what the future parents can do now to get ready for their bundle of joy.

Shaun and Lea will need to save as much money as they can

One of the first things Shaun and Lea should do is set aside money in a baby fund. The money in this account can go toward all the expenses they will need to cover before and after their baby is born.   

“This is a dedicated savings account earmarked for delivery- and baby-related expenses — and only those expenses,” says Money Crashers finance expert Brian Martucci.

One thing Shaun and Lea have in their favor is that they work for a hospital. They likely have excellent benefits that will be able to help them with the baby’s care.

Shaun and Lea also need to think about childcare

When Shaun told Glassman (Richard Schiff) he’s about to become a father, one concern he brought up was his job. Shaun is a busy doctor with a lot of responsibilities. Lea also has a lot on her plate now that her career is taking off. Who is going to watch the baby while he and Lea are at work? Shaun says he’s looking into an affordable night nurse because he has concerns about sleep deprivation, but he also has to think about who will take care of his child during the day.

Bo McLaughlin, an expert at Baby Gear Group, says the first year of a baby’s life can be one of the most expensive. “In the first year alone, the average family spends $6,000 on durable baby gear like strollers and bouncers, and another $6,000 on everything else, such as clothes and diapers,” he says. “Childcare can be another huge annual expense, ranging from more than $15,000 for daycare to more than $40,000 for a nanny.”

How much will Shaun and Lea need to save?

Shaun and Lea have stable jobs, but they should still think about setting up a nest egg for the baby. How much should the parents-to-be set aside? According to McLaughlin, it’s best to aim for about six month’s of salary.

“Depending on your lifestyle and where you live, I’d recommend aiming to save six month’s salary for first-year expenses,” says McLaughlin. “Obviously, the more the better. It may sound like a lot, but with all the basic expenses, plus childcare, delivery, or any medical needs, those costs can add up fast.”

Shaun and Lea should also pad their emergency savings funds. It’s great to have enough saved for the baby, but if they don’t have funds for their own expenses, they should take care of this first and then proceed with the baby fund.

“You should have a comfortable emergency fund in place for yourself already,” advises McLaughlin. “If not, put those basic personal finance principles into place first. It’s like putting your own oxygen mask on first. If you’ve taken good financial care of yourself, you’ll feel more confident and be in the right headspace to take on whatever parenthood throws at you.”

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