Motherhood is not easy and there is no particular advice for aspiring and new mothers. From all sides, mothers often get well-intentioned advice on which doctor to see, what to eat, which medications to take, and how to exercise.
However, even the closest relatives are wary of discussing the financial difficulties that come with this stage of life.
As new difficulties significantly upend how we live and work every day, mothers have had to juggle more every day. Aside from job insecurity, these women are faced with more obligations at home due to work-from-home arrangements.
The current climate has made it more important than ever to prepare for the unexpected.
The Cost of Raising A Child
Beginning with the birth of their children, mothers must carefully consider how their financial demands may change as they progress through their lives.
This includes daily necessities for their children, school fees and, eventually, their children’s tuition fees.
According to a TODAYonline report back in Aug 2021, the cost of raising a child to adulthood comes out to around S$350,000.
Mr Shaun Kwan of Great Eastern Financial Advisers split up the expenses into several different categories based on the children’s life stages:
● Pregnancy — medical check-ups, childbirth
● Infant (Age zero to two) — diapers, milk, baby equipment, infant care
● Toddler (Age three to six) — nursery, childcare
● Schooling years (Age seven to 19) — allowance, school fees, tuition
● University (Age 19 to 25) — allowance, school fees, exchange programme
The amount was chosen based on the cheapest options in Singapore, including “a public hospital delivery, no tuition or enrichment classes and Singapore university fees.”
Maintaining a Balance Between Work and Family
For a long time, a mother's function has been limited to a nurturer and caretaker. However in today’s world, a mother isn’t just confined to the domestic space of a household.
A working mother must maintain the demands of a career with the responsibilities of raising a family. On the other hand, working mothers aren't just those who work.
Stay-at-home mothers who work in the home and women who work outside the home while fulfilling their family obligations should be considered working moms. Work, finances, and raising children are all balancing acts for all mothers.
Sometimes, mothers might depend too much on a paternal figure within the household and neglect their own finances and skills; should the paternal figure be, for one reason or another, be unavailable, this could result in a huge impact in her life.
How Mothers Can Plan Their Finances Properly in 3 Simple Steps
To make good financial decisions for their own lives and their children, mothers need to gather enough knowledge about money management, investments, and savings. This way, they can not only solve their financial problems but also live an independent and sophisticated life.
Step 1: Knowledge about Savings and Investments
Now, these two terms may sound quite easy, but in the real world, making wise decisions in these matters require a vast array of knowledge and understanding.
But that doesn't mean it's impossible for the mothers. Mothers need to take some time off their busy schedule and get a good grasp of where to invest their money, how they can plan their expenditures, and how they can save up for the future.
Step 2: Insurance for a Better Financial Planning
One great way to plan financials is insurance. There is insurance for different sectors like health, hospitalization, life insurance, etc. Knowing about these insurance policies and taking them up can help mothers use their money wisely and give them financial solvency.
In addition, in terms of unfortunate happenings, mothers can be assured that there are contingencies in place to ensure that the family will not fall apart due to financial stress.
One way to cope with the high amount of tuition fees in Singapore is an insurance savings plan specially tailored for your child’s tertiary education.
Step 3: Be Prudent Savers
Motherhood can be an expensive journey and increasingly, mothers in Singapore are becoming prudent savers, putting aside more money for rainy days.
As a rule of thumb, it’s good to set aside three-to-six months’ expenses as an emergency fund.
We know that most mothers are unaware and confused about making financial decisions. And they are often concerned about how they can learn financial skills properly.
There are many government-sponsored courses where moms can learn about Insurance, investments, and other financial skills free of charge.
Alternatively, you can also check out free resources such as the Great Eastern’s Lifepedia where it strives to equip everyone in Singapore with personal financial knowledge.
On this Mother's Day, we can say that moms hold the power to manage their career, children, and financials perfectly, but only if they have enough knowledge and guidelines.
Though we see many mothers are already flourishing and becoming more financially savvy day by day, we always expect to see more mothers coming forward and taking charge of their finances.