The arrival of a new baby is one of the most exciting times in your life. But it’s also an expensive one! You’ll need to buy all kinds of things for your new bundle of joy and may be wondering how much you can expect to spend. The answer: quite a bit! Here’s a closer look at some of the costs associated with having a baby, including what to expect over the first 12 months after birth.
Expenses for the first 12 months of having a new baby
The first year of having a new baby is one of the most exciting and expensive times of your life. The following are some of the most common expenses you may encounter:
- Hospital fees – $2,000-$3,000
- Doctor visits – $1,500-$2,000 (depending on number of visits)
- Baby supplies – $300-$700 (on average)
Diapers are the biggest expense for new parents, and the average cost of diapers in the first year is $1,500. However, these costs can be reduced by using cloth diapers or buying in bulk with coupons and other discounts.
If you prefer other brands, maximize on bulk buying on Amazon Prime Day or trips to Costco or BJs.
Baby’s gotta eat. You can breastfeed or formula feed your infant, and there are many options in between. If you choose to breastfeed your child, it’s important to note that you will need to get a breast pump (may insurance companies will offer one for free), freezer bags for storing excess milk, milk bands [use coupon code: PreggyFinance2023 for $35 off!] and nipple accessories for mom and baby.
When your child is older, making homemade baby food is appealing but it can be time-consuming! There are also many online resources where parents share recipes for homemade baby food and purees. Fresh blended fruit and veggies can cost less than store-bought versions.
Clothing is one of the most expensive things you’ll need to buy for your new baby. In fact, it’s estimated that parents spend about $1,000 on clothing in the first year alone, but that’s a choice!
However, there are ways to save money on clothing:
- Get free hand-me-downs from friends and family members who have recently had babies. You can also check online forums like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace for free items from people in your area who just want them out of their house (and off their backs).
- Buy used clothes at thrift stores or consignment shops instead of buying new ones at retail prices–you might even find some designer brands! Some consignment shops even offer loyalty programs where you earn points toward future purchases as you donate old items; this makes donating easier since they’ll give you credit towards future purchases when they sell off those same items later on down the road (and everyone wins).
If all else fails, know that frequent washing of the same clothes is totally fine for infants. They need warmth and love, they don’t judge!
The first thing you’ll need to do is buy a car seat to get baby home safely and then you’ll need a crib or co-sleeping bassinet. You can find them at any big box store, but if you want something nicer or more personalized, there are plenty of options online. Once that’s been taken care of, it’s time to think about carriers and car seats (newborns must be transported in these). Carriers come in many different styles and prices–some are designed specifically for newborns while others have additional features like extra padding or pockets for storage space on the go for older children.
Car seats come with their own set of considerations: some models have higher weight limits than others. Some require an infant insert. Some only work with certain strollers–and the list goes on! It might take some research before deciding which type will best suit your needs, but know that you’ll have to upgrade to a larger model until they reach the age and weight requirements in your state.
If you’re lucky, baby showers will come with strollers-single or double, high chairs, changing tables, baby swings, bouncers, diaper genies, and all kinds of other baby swag.
Daycare costs vary widely, depending on where you live. The average cost of daycare in your area will depend on what type of care (in-home or center-based) and how many hours per week are needed.
The good news is there are ways to save money on daycare costs:
- Look into tax credits or deductions for childcare expenses. Depending on your income level and whether your employer offers a benefit program that covers some or all of the cost. This could save hundreds or thousands per year!
- Ask family members if they would be willing to watch your child during off hours, especially when the baby is under 6 months – that’s when most daycare centers charge the most. It’s worth asking around among trusted family and friends because sometimes people don’t realize how much they could make by offering this service themselves!
Health care is one of the most important expenses, and it’s also one of the most unpredictable. A newborn will need regular checkups with a pediatrician, as well as vaccinations to protect against diseases such as polio and measles. You may also want to consider supplemental insurance for your baby if you don’t already have coverage through your employer or spouse’s plan. In addition to these routine visits, there are other costs that could come up at any time: medications (such as antibiotics), supplements or special formula for babies with food allergies or other dietary restrictions–and emergency care if something goes wrong unexpectedly.
Cost of Postpartum mom care
The cost of postpartum mom care is a significant expense. A postpartum doula can cost anywhere from $500 to $1200 a month, depending on where you live and what services your doula offers.
If you’d like support after birth, consider joining a support group to help new parents adjust faster and feel less isolated. The average monthly fee for membership can be low to free.
Postpartum fitness may be included in the budget. Many gyms offer special classes specifically geared toward women who’ve just given birth so they can ease back into exercising without too much strain. Also, pelvic floor recuperation, postpartum therapy, and a new wardrobe may factor into the first few months’ budget.
It’s no secret that babies are expensive, but if you think about it, they can also be a lot of fun. Babies bring so much joy into our lives. It is important not to let the costs ruin those precious moments. Instead, budget wisely and stay organized to keep expenses low.