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The decision to finally start a family together with your partner is a big step for most people. It means that everything is going to change – for the better, of course, but change can still be pretty terrifying.

Sometimes, we tend to rush into things just to get the ball rolling and find ourselves stressed out and overwhelmed when there are just a few months left before the baby is born. Make it a bit easier for yourself by preparing for the big day and giving yourself the state of mind that is able to handle these changes.

Here is a handful of the very best things you can do for yourself and your partner before you start a family. That way, you can make sure that you’re both prepared enough and eager to welcome the new chapter.

#1 Talk about your future

Planning and preparation mean that you have so many advantages that those who don’t get to plan these things miss out on. Where would you like to live when your kid is old enough to go to school, for example, and do you want to stay in the same city all these years?

Most children fall in love with their childhood home and you should give your kid the same opportunity. When you have time and room to prepare, you can talk about these kinds of things instead of just taking life as it comes. It will be a huge benefit for your kid, of course, who won’t have to move houses too much during their childhood.

You might want to discuss your career plans as well, by the way, to make sure that you’re both on the same page. Perhaps daddy wants to stay at home with the kids while mommy is working – or maybe you both want to stay home which, of course, raises a set of new questions you’re going to have to answer.

#2 Settle your finances

Having a child tends to be expensive, you know, and it might be one of the least financially wise decisions you can make. We don’t really have kids so that they can help out on the farm or with chopping wood when they come of age either anymore, so you can certainly expect this to be an investment that doesn’t pay off in terms of money.

Having children is, luckily, not just for our own sake, though, and you’d want to make sure that your finances are as healthy as possible before you start your new family. Look into personal debt consolidation loans, for example, if you’d like to start with a clean slate – and remember to set up a proper budget as well.

#3 Talk about parenting

This one is quite tough for most couples as you might find that your partner has a different parenting method than yourself. Many won’t find out about this until they end up always having to be the strict parent while their partner is the fun one and, needless to say, it’s usually not that much fun to be seen as strict. Try to talk about your views on parenting, and make use of this article to guide you a bit along the way.

Parenting is definitely difficult and the better prepared you are, the more you can enjoy the fun and exciting parts.