Raising and financially supporting a family is something that can be a worry for many of us. With families being different sizes, from different financial backgrounds and having different incomes, each family’s focus may be different. Let us tell you how you, and those closest to you, can benefit from preparing for the future.

Always have access to a rainy day fund

As a Credit Union, we understand why it’s so important to have savings – whether you’re saving for something in particular or for unexpected expenses. Your savings could help towards family holidays, boiler breakdowns or even school uniforms. The costs which come with family life are endless, so the more prepared you can be, the more your future self will thank you.

The option we’d always recommend is to try and save every month and to make it easier, do it on payday. It’s also important to pay all bills/debts/necessities etc and finally, luxuries should only come out of funds left over.

Avoid the “Bank of Mum and Dad”

According to Legal and General, in 2019 the average parental contribution to help children get onto the property ladder was £24,100 (up by over £6,000 compared to in 2018). Whilst we aren’t suggesting parents should or must help their children get onto the property ladder, starting to save for them whilst they’re young could be a good idea. This may not only help them financially later on, but also teach them good habits so they may not need to ask you for money in the future.

Saving for a child or teenager could help them to fund their future driving lessons, or their first car. These things might be what helps them to get their first job and this could lead to them starting to save for their first house. These positive money management tips could help your child be self-sufficient, helping you save in later life!

Short, medium and long term planning
It’s worthwhile sitting down and thinking about your near future to see which mortgage product might suit you best. Finding the cheapest mortgage deal available might be of great importance to you, but if you’re planning on having children and may need a bigger house, you might want a shorter-term fixed rate mortgage.

If you think you’ll need a bigger home to cater for you an expanding family, you may want a shorter-term fixed rate deal where you could possibly tie in a house move with a re-mortgage. If you’re settled and know you won’t be moving for a while and want to be assured your mortgage will be affordable for as long as possible, a 5-10 year fixed rate mortgage might be better suited. If you find yourself wanting to move in the middle of a fixed rate on your current mortgage you could consider porting your mortgage. This is where you take your existing mortgage from one property over to another, you can only do this if you are purchasing a new property at the same time as you are selling your old one.

It’s ok to budget… we promise

We’re going to state the obvious here. Budgeting is ok. You’re not being too careful, in fact, it’s very sensible. This rule is relevant to many things; Christmas, birthdays, holidays, even food shopping.

Don’t feel like every Christmas/holiday/birthday needs to be bigger, better, and more expensive than the last.  Only spend what you can afford from your budget and find ways to celebrate those important occasions by getting creative with presents, You may even want to consider reducing the number of people you buy for.