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You’re going to have a baby! This is likely the most exciting time of your life, and rightly so, as the next year will be filled with joy, happiness… and a little stress. Financial strain from a new baby can contribute significantly to that stress, as many new parents aren’t prepared for the money required for even just the first 12 months of your baby’s life.
According to the USDA, the total cost of raising a child until age is over $233,000 and growing! Numbers like that can be overwhelming. That’s why it’s wise to prepare early and know where you will likely be spending the most cash in your baby’s first year of life. Here is a list of the 8 biggest expenses in your baby’s first year.
Chapter 1. 8. TOYS
Toys at the newborn stage are far more for stimulation and development than anything else. They are an important and recurring purchase for your new addition, not to mention the fact that a baby occupied with a toy can give a parent time to get things done.
Some toys can be quite expensive, but some will literally last a lifetime. The emotional rewards of a baby growing up with a toy for decades is priceless.
A quick way to save money on toys is to occasionally use safe household items instead, such as a whisk, which is a winner in many households. Be sure to give it a good cleaning before and after cooking with it!
Chapter 2. 7. GEAR
We’re talking mainly about things like car seats, a crib, bedding, dresser, stroller, etc. This can get even more expensive if you venture into designer territory, or significantly less if you have family hand me downs that can save you hundreds. A good way to save is to have a registry for your baby shower to help with those bigger purchases.
Chapter 3. 6. CLOTHES
Your little one will grow so fast in the first 12 months that you’ll find some outfits you’ve bought only get worn once or twice before he or she has outgrown it! Save the clothes of course, as hopefully, your next child can enjoy the hand me downs from a big brother or big sister!
Chapter 4. 5. DIAPERS + BABY WIPES
Prepare for your munchkin to burn through diapers at about 10 a day. Sometimes you won’t even have had a chance to seal a new diaper on before it becomes victim to the whim of your angel. Don’t forget, with each diaper, you’ll need to wipe. All in all, you’ll be looking at between $30 to $100 a month for these two items alone, if not more.
Looking to save? Buy in bulk or if anyone is looking to give you a new baby gift, ask for diapers and lots of ’em!
Chapter 5. 4. HEALTH CARE
We’re talking health checks, vaccinations, medications and more, all adding to your bottom line. Be sure to check over your health insurance policy so there are no unwanted surprises and update it when your bundle hits the scene!
Check out HealthCare.com for more detailed policy information and what to do if you need newborn health coverage.
Chapter 6. 3. FOOD
Your little addition will be an eating and pooping machine. Even if you breastfeed solely for the first six months, expect to pay for nursing bras and tops, and possibly a breast pump.
“At one point, my daughter was eating five jars of organic baby food a day at nearly $1 per jar,” says one mom. “Baby food is ridiculously expensive,” says another via www.babycenter.com
It is possible to create your own baby food, and with access to a good quality hand blender and the internet, anything is possible.
Chapter 7. 2. CHILD CARE
Potentially one of the more critical new parent decisions, and possibly the most expensive is child care. According to Child Care Aware, nearly eleven million children are in childcare in America every week and that cost continues to rise. The average annual cost of full-time care ranges from $3,930 in Mississippi to $16,430 in Massachusetts. For some of us, we will have no choice but the venture into childcare and babysitting territory.
Chapter 8. 1. THE BIRTH
The most expensive part of your newborn’s life is entering the world because the birthing process isn’t cheap.
“The average cost of childbirth in a hospital ranges from $10,600 for a natural delivery with no complications to $23,900 for a cesarean section with complications. These costs often don’t include anesthesia, newborn care and other physician charges.” – www.howstuffworks.com
There’s no easy way around this. Be prepared and be insured. It’ll be worth it.
Although the cost of having a child is expensive, it is one of the most rewarding parts of life.