One of the first things my husband and I discussed upon learning that we were having a baby was money. What would our baby costs be? I did as much research online as I could, and I've learned that it really depends on our personal situation.
One of the first things we examined was the cost of childcare. We wanted to know whether it would be more beneficial for me to return to work after the baby arrives, or simply stay home and raise our child myself. As it turns out, finding someone to care for my baby costs anywhere from $100 per week to almost $250 per week! The biggest factor here was whether we used a personal nanny, an in-home caretaker, or a full learning daycare center. We are still thinking this one through.
Feeding the Baby
The next cost we researched was food for our baby. I would love to breastfeed if I can, but I know that is not always possible or the best option for every woman and child. If I am unable to breastfeed, I need to plan on some additional baby costs. Formula prices range by brand and type, so this is something I may have to wait and explore once I learn what my baby likes. Although breastfeeding would essentially be free, I do not want to discount the possibility of this cost.
Labor and Delivery
Another unavoidable cost is the price of delivering my baby. Let me tell you- delivering a baby costs a lot of money! It can, anyway. Around here I have the option of going to the hospital or having a midwife come and help me with a home birth. Although the homebirth option is more affordable overall, my insurance company covers more costs associated with the hospital. Ultimately, the hospital is a better and more affordable choice for us.
There are many other costs that can quickly add up as well, depending on how far I want to go. It's easy for me to want to buy lots of clothes and toys for my baby, but I know they aren't always necessary. As long as I have the basics for my family: food, shelter, diapers, and enough clothing to keep us warm and clean, I know that we will be alright. So what will our total baby costs be? We will just have to wait and see!