By Tara Carter
Congratulations, you’re having a baby! Planning for a new child can be fun and exciting, and making sure you’re financially prepared is a huge part in ensuring you’re ready to bring baby home. One of the most important things to do when getting your finances together is to SAVE! Having money saved is not only smart for emergency purposes, it will also ease the stress of having to work extra hours to make up for ongoing expenses after the baby arrives.
Ongoing costs can include insurance, childcare, food, clothes, toiletries, education from nursery school through college, and any other costs unique to the family. Also, let’s not forget about the many one-time costs that you’ll need to plan for like strollers and cribs. After you’ve built up a nice savings, it’s time to set a new monthly budget that outlines all other bills and expenses, along with the new baby expenses.
Here are the average costs of necessary items needed for a new born child:
- For the Nursery – A crib, mattress, changing table, and glider chair will cost at least $150 per item for the savvy shopper. For those who opt for the higher quality cribs, you can expect to spend around $3,000 for the crib alone. Other costs like baby monitors and changing tables range between $50 and $120 on average.
- For Feeding – Costs for feeding will differ based on how parents choose to feed their child. For those that will use formula, you can expect to spend at least $1,500 or more a year on formula depending on the brand choice. Families who choose to go the breast-feeding route will save more per year on feeding costs, however other costs become a factor. Some examples include nursing bras averaging $75 per bra, nursing pillows costing approximately $29, and breast pumps can range between $30 and $350.
- For Traveling – In order to get your baby home you’ll definitely need a car seat which averages around $100 depending on the brand. If you plan on taking your baby out for a stroll, plan to spend $130 for your basic stroller, and around $50 for a diaper bag. That leads us to our next category.
- Toiletries/ Clothes – Let’s face it, with babies comes diapers, and with messy diapers comes many outfit changes for baby throughout the day. In a year, you can expect to spend around $864 on diapers depending on the brand, and $240 on baby wipes. You should also make room in the budget for creams and powders which average around $10 for a one time purchase. For clothes you can expect to spend about $60 a month, also depending on the brand.
- Childcare and Insurance – On average, a baby daycare center costs $972 per month, which adds up to $11,666 per year. Along with childcare, you want to make sure your health insurance plan accommodates your new baby.
With these numbers in mind, keep your eyes open for sales and special offers to help save and plan as much as possible before welcoming your new bundle of joy.