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4 Steps to Budget for your 2023 Journey to Parenthood

If your path to parenthood requires a financial investment, here are 4 tips to help you plan your budget. One of the most important steps on your parenthood journey is financially planning so that each step of the process is manageable and predictable. 

1. Determine your family building goals

Is your goal to have one child or two? Are you determined to be a parent no matter what – or are you going to ‘give it a go’ up to a certain number of attempts? Setting an initial framework and the steps you are willing to take is a great place to start. For some couples, maybe you are willing to continue on your journey with a surrogate if IVF doesn’t work out. For others, maybe knowing that you tried on your own is enough. Each of these decisions will impact the following steps.

2. Understand the total cost

Based on your goals, a bit of research to understand the steps and the total cost can help next. For single parents by choice, or couples that need assistance with an egg source, sperm source, or womb, family building can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to well over a hundred thousand dollars.

Sunfish offers a cost calculator to help patients and intended parents (IPs) project the cost of their particular journey, with and without embryo creation. A typical cost would be anywhere from $25,000 for an IVF journey, to $220,000 for a surrogacy journey with an egg donor.

3. Evaluate your existing financial toolkit

For most parents, the best place to start budgeting is to understand your current financial toolkit. Here are a list of questions for you (and your partner, if you have one) to discuss:

  1. How much are our current savings?
  2. Of our ‘liquid’ assets (investments, etc) – how much can we spare?
  3. Do we have any insurance coverage or employer benefits? Sunfish can help you explore this option further.
  4. Are we eligible for any discounts? Sunfish offers a searchable grant and discount database.
  5. Can our friends or family contribute to this journey? At what point would we ask them?
  6. If we don’t have enough, how much can we start setting aside now to save?
  7. Would we consider a loan or other refinancing, for example, refinancing our home?

There is no right or wrong answer here, but a budget can help. For example, if your household income is $75,000 per year, your after tax income each month might be about $5,000. If you were to borrow $20,000 for your IVF journey in a 3 year loan, at a 15% Annual Percentage Rate (APR), your estimated monthly payment would be about $693 per month.

Is this a reasonable amount for your household? Some of these variables can be adjusted – amount and term length – so there is some flexibility for you to find the right amount for you.

A Sunfish Financial advocate can set up a complimentary consultation to help guide patients or intended parents through the financial planning process. We offer access to loans and lines of credit of up to $100,000 for your parenthood journey. 

4. Take one step at a time

If existing resources can’t cover the cost, you’re not alone! Many aspiring parents need to spread out their journey or take one step at a time. There are a number of community groups online, such as Resolve, that can help you learn more about this pathway. Sunfish provides resources and guides directly to our customers as well.

Please note we are not a financial advisor and this is not intended to act as financial advice.

Sunfish’s mission is to make the journey to parenthood financially attainable for everyone.  Our goal is to democratize access to the family building resources that historically have only been available to those with large financial resources. Contact us at for more information.