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Health Before


Last Reviewed: April 2017

Financial Preparation

Handling a Reduced Income

Key Info

  • Losing 45% of your weekly income while on maternity leave can be challenging – prepare for it.
  • Having a baby means having to manage on less money.
  • Reducing unnecessary expenses before you try to conceive can help you manage.
  • Buying items your baby will really need, not what you think he or she needs can help you keep your costs down.

Having a baby is a time of happiness, especially if you’re not worrying about your financial circumstances.

In Canada, most new mothers lose 45% of their income while on maternity leave. At the same time, their expenses can rise to nearly $200 per month on diapers, food and other products for baby.
A new mother on maternity leave in Canada — who was working for an employer — is entitled to be paid only 55% of the income she earned before giving birth.

This amount is capped at a maximum of $413/week.

Tips for Managing On Less Money

How you manage your reduced income will depend on your budget and individual situation. Here are some helpful suggestions.

  • Develop a budget and stick to it. Chart your expenses, then prepare a tentative financial plan for handling a reduced income while you, your partner, or both of you are away from work.
  • Learn all you can about breastfeeding. You will find that breastfeeding is cheaper for you and healthy for you and your baby.

  • Make lifestyle changes before you start trying to conceive. Try to reduce unnecessary expenses and save the extra money for buying things for your baby.
  • Buy what your baby really needs and not what you think he or she needs. Watch the influence of advertisers; for example, an approved infant car seat is mandatory in the province of Ontario, but an infant swing is not.
  • Be cautious when buying baby equipment from garage sales. There may be safety concerns.
  • Accept hand-me-down clothing and shop at second-hand stores.

Preparing for Pregnancy: The Basics | For Moms-To-Be | For Dads-To-Be | Contact Us

Revised: Friday June 23 2017

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