Planning for a baby can be hard enough. Delving into the financial side of such planning can be even harder. And just because we’ve been though it once, it doesn’t mean that we know exactly what having a baby is going to cost us the second time around.
There are all sorts of things that can throw our financial planning for baby out of whack. While the second time for us has been a bit easier when it comes to expenses and knowing how much things costs, we’ve found that throughout both of our baby experiences, we’ve encountered certain aspects that have skewed our financial planning.
Baby showers can put a huge dent in the overall cost of baby supplies. We ended up getting things like our baby swing, crib, changing table, clothes, breast pump, baby monitors, bathtub, diaper bag, bottles, and all sorts of other supplies at our shower. This was fantastic, as it probably saved us well over $1,000 in baby item costs; however, when baby number two rolled around five years later, and many of these items had bitten the proverbial dust, we were in for a rude awakening since we really hadn’t realized just how expensive some of them were due to having gotten them for free at our shower.
Work Support, Gifts and Hand-me-downs
When we had our first son, I was still working in the hotel business. My co-workers were gracious enough to throw me a “diaper party” before our son was born. Each department head from the various hotel departments brought in a pack or two of diapers of varying sizes. This was a wonderful treat, and actually saved us having to buy diapers for our son (and literally hundreds of dollars) until he was about four months old. Again though, for baby number two, we won’t be so fortunate since I have left the hotel business in favor of self-employment. Therefore, we’ll be on our own for the full term of diaper costs.
Formula versus Breast Feeding
Often, at $15 to $20 a container or more, depending upon the type or brand, the cost of formula over a baby’s early feeding days can add up to hundred of dollars or more in costs. While we really didn’t want to, we ended up formula feeding our first son, so it cost us much more than if we had breast fed.
Knowing the costs involved, we’re hoping to be able to breast feed our second child, but we’re prepared for the additional expenses in case we can’t.
Leftovers from a Previous Child or Children
Thankfully, we kept many of the baby items from our first child. While certain things were broken, resold or donated after our first, we ended up holding onto things like our baby bathtub, bottles, dishware, much of our clothing, diaper bag, bedding, and towels. We also kept things like much of our baby bedroom furnishings, our changing table mattress, and toys.
While the preparatory purchases for our second child have been substantial for items like a baby swing, car seat, playard, stroller, more clothing, and similar items, it is far less –ranging about $300 to $400 — than if we had to repurchase everything new.
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