How Much Does It Cost to Have a Baby?

On this episode of the Money Confidential podcast, host Stefanie O’Connell Rodriguez talks with Reshma Saujani, founder and CEO of Girls Who Code and Marshall Plan for Moms, about the impact of parenthood on your personal finances.

Photo: Francesco Carta/Getty Images

Every Monday on the Money Confidential podcast, host Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez, a nationally recognized money expert, delves into your (confidential) money problems and delivers smart, practical, and completely doable solutions that will help you work toward your ultimate financial goals. This is the place to come for real talk about money—and real solutions that actually work.

Follow now: Apple Podcasts / Spotify / Amazon Music / Player.FM / Stitcher

On This Episode

What's the real cost of having a baby? And how can you prepare for it? Host Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez interviews Reshma Saujani, founder and CEO of Girls Who Code and Marshall Plan for Moms, about the impact of parenthood on your personal finances, and what we can do to prepare our money and our careers for one of life's most expensive milestones.

Meet Our Caller

"Carrie" is a 32-year-old marketing professional based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She and her husband are planning to have a baby, but they don't know what this will mean for the future of their finances.

Anonymous Caller "Carrie"

"I feel like there are a lot of other expenses that are lurking in hidden corners that I'm not sure how to prepare for."

—Anonymous Caller "Carrie"

Meet Host Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez

Money confidential podcast - host, Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez
Caroline White Photography

Stefanie is a nationally recognized personal finance expert ready to talk work, worth, and money with unapologetically ambitious women. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, USA Today, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, and Oprah Magazine, and Stefanie has appeared on ABC World News, CBSN, Fox & Friends, Fox Business, Bloomberg, The Dr. Oz Show, The Doctors, and more to share her smart, practical solutions to any money problem.

Meet Our Expert, Reshma Saujani

reshma saujani
Adrian Kinloch

Reshma Saujani is the founder and CEO of Girls Who Code and Marshall Plan for Moms. She began her career as an attorney and Democratic organizer. In 2010, she became the first Indian American woman to run for U.S. Congress. She also served as New York City's Deputy Public Advocate, where she created innovative partnerships to support DREAMers and promote campaign finance reform, among other initiatives. She is the bestselling author of Brave, Not Perfect.

Advice From the Episode

Reshma Saujani

"We have to redefine working motherhood in America, and we have to focus on the structural support for working moms."

—Reshma Saujani
  • Tell your employer about your pregnancy as soon as you can. "Almost dare them to make a change because there are laws that protect you. You shouldn't be breastfeeding in a closet. You should get flexibility. And they should stagger your paid leave so that you come back when you are ready." —Reshma
  • Don't let outside voices convince you that you're not doing enough. "We are literally being trained that being a good mom means you sacrifice yourself and you become a martyr for your children. And any amount, whether it's money or time, that you're spending on yourself means you're not fulfilling that ideal." — Reshma

Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez

"With one family spending a couple hundred dollars on a crib and another spending a couple thousand, it can be that much harder to decide how much is the 'right' amount to budget for your family, especially if you're comparing yourself to the parents you see around you or on social media."

—Stefanie O'Connell Rodriguez
  • Start thinking through the budget line items that are going to change when you have a child. "The more unknowns you have, the harder it is to create plans." —Stefanie
  • Reassess your insurance needs. "Do you have life insurance? Does having a kid change your homeowners' insurance policy? If you're a renter, is it going to change that insurance?" —Stefanie
  • As an exercise, come up with a number that you would say are your monthly baby expenses. Ask yourself, "What's this baby going to add to my cost of living, projected childcare, the insurance, everything?" Then, "Start putting that money into savings just to see how it feels when you have to live on a monthly budget that you project having after the baby." —Stefanie
  • "Start talking to your co-parent, if you have one, about how a child will affect your respective lifestyles, finances, and careers, and what expectations you each have about the new responsibilities you'll be taking on and how they'll be accommodated." —Stefanie

Links and Resources

Download the transcript for this episode.

Have a money issue you'd like to share on a future episode? Fill out our intake form.

Recent Podcast Episodes You May Like:

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles