The 4 big ticket items you need to budget for in your 30s

Cara Brett 10 November 2022

At Bounce, we specialise in professional families going through life’s big transitions. Typically that’s a family between the ages of 35-50 with a couple of young children.

We have seen so much over the last 8+ years of working with our clients, and whilst everyone is different, we’ve picked up on some very common themes that most people in their thirties go through.

For most, your 20’s are all about having fun, travel, and building your career, but as soon as you hit your 30s, some major life shifts come up and they tend to happen in pretty quick succession.

Today I thought I’d outline the 4 major expenses that pop up in your 30s that you need to think about.

Wedding: Unless you have very generous family members, a wedding can be a fun but costly party. You can do this cheap or extravagant and there is no right or wrong but the average that we are seeing is about $40,000 at the moment.

That doesn’t take into account a honeymoon either, which is another cost to consider.

Kids: Kids are their own cost, but it’s so much more than just the nappies and formula. A lot of people need to factor in potential fertility treatments like IVF.

Once you do have a child, then the major expenses completely shift. You typically have a drop in income during maternity leave, and then you need to factor in childcare and future school considerations.

As a general rule, based on the 100’s of families we have seen, we estimated that every child adds an extra $10,000 pa towards your everyday living expenses. That doesn’t include any potential private school costs in future years, which can be anywhere from a couple of thousand a year, to $50,000 pa depending on where you are going.

House Upgrade: We tend to find that with kids, comes the house upgrade as the need for more room becomes apparent very quickly.

This usually means a bigger loan which could be substantially bigger than any previous home loan that you have had, but could also be corresponding with a reduction in your household income.

Car Upgrade: Once you start adding family members who need special booster seats, the size of your car also becomes a factor. You may need to consider changing your car to a more family friendly option.

Again, the amount will be different depending on your needs, but at the moment we are seeing most base level family cars for around $40,000 if you are going brand new.


As you can see, A LOT happens in your 30s. We find that this decade the most turbulent financially speaking because you have income going up and down and costs going up and down in any given year. Some of the above goals will likely also conflict with each other and timing will become important to navigate it comfortably.

When we provide financial advice to our clients, we map out different scenarios to see how all of the above can work together in the best way possible for your specific needs. This is so helpful when it comes to the decision making process because you want to know you can really enjoy this period of life.

About the author: Cara Brett

Cara Brett proudly heads up Bounce Financial - founded in 2014 after a successful, decade-long career in the financial services industry. Cara’s experience encompasses both the financial product and financial advice sides. This gives her a comprehensive and holistic knowledge of all facets of financial planning.