Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

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copenhagen227
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:46 pm

Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by copenhagen227 »

For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
TJat
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by TJat »

Congratulations. $500 a week for 5-day daycare in a HCOL sounds right. Brand name diapers and wipes are $40 for the big boxes, figure $100 per month on average…they go through more when younger but more come in a box. Food adds up but varies with whatever you’re doing, esp breast milk vs formula. Premade baby food is easy but relatively expensive at $1.50 a “pouch”, you’ll probably go through 2-3 a day.

I generally found that it can get very expensive, but much of it comes from convenience rather than necessity. Cloth diapers and pureeing your own food is really cheap, but time consuming. You also offset some of the costs by not really doing anything like dinners out, vacations, day trip activities :)
alfaspider
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by alfaspider »

copenhagen227 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:52 pm For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
Daycare/childcare is really the big expense. Everything else is just noise. We pay $40k/yr for two in MCOL area, so $2k a month in HCOL sounds reasonable. You do get a few grand of tax relief if your employer offers a dependent care flexible spending account (limit is now raised to $10k).
Silversides
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Silversides »

alfaspider wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 2:28 pm
copenhagen227 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:52 pm For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
Daycare/childcare is really the big expense. Everything else is just noise. We pay $40k/yr for two in MCOL area, so $2k a month in HCOL sounds reasonable. You do get a few grand of tax relief if your employer offers a dependent care flexible spending account (limit is now raised to $10k).
Can confirm HCOL daycare is $2,000-2,500/mo and the rest is noise. HCOL daycare = waitlists so get cracking.
kasamasa
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by kasamasa »

Day care is about $2000-$2500 as others have said. The other expenses like Diapers, clothes etc ended up being around $100 to $150 a month for me
Miguelito
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Miguelito »

Daycare will go through a comical amount of diapers and other consumables they may request that you bring. At times I felt they were using our diapers to change all the kids.

In the suburbs of my NE city and a HCOLA, good daycare for infants was 2k/month over 10 years ago.
Last edited by Miguelito on Tue Jun 15, 2021 3:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
cabould
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by cabould »

TJat wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 2:23 pm You also offset some of the costs by not really doing anything like dinners out, vacations, day trip activities :)
Truer words have never been spoken
lazynovice
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by lazynovice »

If you are 5-6 months pregnant, I’d start calling day cares and finding out how long waitlists are. Find out when you can tour. That will help with estimates.
“I didn’t want my sailboat to be in the driveway when I died.” Nomadland
PowderDay9
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by PowderDay9 »

You need to start calling daycares when you first find out you're pregnant to get an understanding of what your daycare market is like. It will vary by city but not uncommon for the better daycares to have a 9-15 month wait-list.
123
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by 123 »

Some daycares/nursery schools are somewhat elitist with standards for the children that are admitted, sometimes only the best. The best come with parents who are likely able, and willing, to donate to the school over and above the monthly fees. Your kid can be a shoe-in if you hold sway in directing corporate grants toward community needs, the school is in the community and it can always use more money.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.
bds3
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by bds3 »

Forget budgets. You're screwed. Kids are expensive.

I'm kidding of course but only kind of. Kids are a big reason we changed from a budget to a reverse budget. What's a reverse budget? Well a reverse budget is: I am going to save $xx,xxx per month, and that will achieve our financial goals, and we can theoretically spend everything else.

Off topic perhaps, but I'm a high earner (not dual physician level but high nonetheless), so I can empathize with your situation.

Also $2k a month seems low. I'm in a pretty LCOL-MCOL area and mine was comparable to that.

Good luck and congrats.
lazynovice
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by lazynovice »

I thought this was a good thread a month or so ago. It had some estimates and ideas about how to save money.

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=348893
“I didn’t want my sailboat to be in the driveway when I died.” Nomadland
chet96
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by chet96 »

Congrats. Amazon and Costco are your friend.

You can save real money on diapers having the large boxes mailed to the house. But do NOT subscribe and save as the prices and box sizes change month to month. Add an Amazon credit card and you save more. It takes a bit of planning but set up a reorder point where you always have a reserve package. (The infant size boxes have 2-3 packages inside. Mark a package with an x. When x is open you reorder. Your tired brain will need visual queues.)

Wipes and formula at Costco are a great deal. You will be amazed how many packages you use.

Do not wait on daycare. Get on a list now. Ask your colleagues for suggestions if you are new to the area. (We live near a medical center, there are 3 facilities on campus). Spend some time checking them out as there are staffing differences. You also may have to supply daycare with diapers, wipes, and food. So plan for that expense as well.

Our first daycare made sense financially but was not a good fit. Have a backup plan.

Also figure out where the 24hr pharmacy is. Nothing worse than needing a script and having to wait for the pharmacist to fill the 40 that came in overnight.

Good luck.
FoolMeOnce
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by FoolMeOnce »

PowderDay9 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 4:26 pm You need to start calling daycares when you first find out you're pregnant to get an understanding of what your daycare market is like. It will vary by city but not uncommon for the better daycares to have a 9-15 month wait-list.


On the bright side, daycare costs will be zero for a while. :wink:

With our second, out daycare director was the first person we told we were expecting, well before family and friends. Can't remember with the first, but we knew from friends to act quickly.
KyleAAA
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by KyleAAA »

The extra cost is almost all daycare in HCOL areas, really. None of the other costs amount to much compared to daycare. $2k sounds realistic for HCOL, but it can go higher than that in some places.
PowderDay9
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by PowderDay9 »

FoolMeOnce wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 7:52 pm
PowderDay9 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 4:26 pm You need to start calling daycares when you first find out you're pregnant to get an understanding of what your daycare market is like. It will vary by city but not uncommon for the better daycares to have a 9-15 month wait-list.


On the bright side, daycare costs will be zero for a while. :wink:

With our second, out daycare director was the first person we told we were expecting, well before family and friends. Can't remember with the first, but we knew from friends to act quickly.
Actually one of my friends signed up at a new daycare and had to start paying weekly BEFORE the baby was even born. His city has very high demand for daycare and pretty much all of them have a long wait list. The daycare opened about 2 months before their baby was born so they had to pay the normal rate just to keep their spot. So ridiculous! Haha.
regularguy455
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by regularguy455 »

lazynovice wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 3:20 pm If you are 5-6 months pregnant, I’d start calling day cares and finding out how long waitlists are. Find out when you can tour. That will help with estimates.
This is good advice. Prices vary widely. It’s worth visiting several centers to get a feel for the program. It’s not just about cost - you should observe how teacher interact with children. What’s the center rating? Do they wear foot covering in the infant room? Are there observation windows in the room? Do they have an app where you get updates about feeding and diaper changes? How long is the tenure of the teachers?

We toured several facilities and found that the center we liked most was not the most expensive. And one of the most expensive centers was one we’d never send our child to.

The more you do your due diligence, the more confident you’ll feel. As for the other expenses, they really are nothing compared to childcare (other than the hospital deductible).
Miguelito
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Miguelito »

When our kids were small, I recall people complaining that school was almost over and college was coming. I used to tell them I could not wait for them to go to school so I could stop paying for daycare. Expenses of course really don't end there. After daycare, the bills got lower but we still paid for before and after school care, summer camps, school vacation week care, etc. Then non-school activities start. Music lessons, town sports, club sports, etc.
stoptothink
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by stoptothink »

KyleAAA wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 7:54 pm The extra cost is almost all daycare in HCOL areas, really. None of the other costs amount to much compared to daycare. $2k sounds realistic for HCOL, but it can go higher than that in some places.
Even in MCOL areas, it trumps everything. One month of daycare is equivalent to at least a year of food for an infant. When both our kids were in daycare full-time it represented almost exactly half of our total annual household expenditures and we are in a MCOL area.

You'll often here parents says "just wait until they start playing sports or get into high school..." and I wonder what the heck they are spending money on raising their kids that we aren't. Our kids now are in (expensive) year-round sports, they eat nonstop, and we are no longer clothing them exclusively in hand-me-downs, yet the child-rearing costs are a small fraction of what they were. When they started school it felt like one of us got a second job. The best thing is those costs post-daycare are primarily optional and could easily be paired down if you ever have money issues (my kids' sport represents about half the current cost of raising them; I have no problem telling them they're playing rec league - or nothing - if we suddenly couldn't afford it).
MM1130
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by MM1130 »

Beyond daycare costs, a lot of this is up to your personal spending habits. Every choice has a cheap option and an expensive option with all the bells and whistles (graco vs clek, pack of Carter’s onesies vs boutique baby clothes, etc). We make way less than you, and I’m cheap so we buy used for almost everything.

For diapers we use up&up brand and $100 worth of diapers and wipes lasts us about 3 months. I breastfed so there were no formula costs, we did baby led weaning so there were minimal extra food costs, bought used clothes— until 12 months most are practically new, etc. We already had a home and a vehicle that were family friendly so we didn’t spend on those types of things.

Try making a baby registry and then you may get a better idea for your taste in baby gear and a more accurate budget.
jbmitt
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by jbmitt »

DW is a physician and our 9 month old is at a daycare in close proximity to the local hospitals and used by many of the other physicians. We’re in lower cost of living area and pay $1200/month for daycare.

We lucked into a spot due to covid. Most openings are taken by siblings of existing students. Each program is different but they offer discounts based on method of payment. We can pay quarterly or use our dependent care account.

I’ve found clothing and toys to be the more surprise items. Daycare is fixed. Formula and now food aren’t too bad.
flyfishers83
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by flyfishers83 »

As mentioned, the big item is daycare. Almost all of the other items are in your control. We have a 22 month old and expecting another in 2 months. We mixed way overboard with frugal on the first. Bought a horribly expensive crib and chair, but refinished free furniture. Spent several hundred on a swing and bassinet, but bought a ton of stuff from a really good second hand kids store-especially toys and shoes.

We don't really budget, so my best advice is shop smart for things you can plan. Buy strategically and in bulk. There are times when you can stack rewards/discounts certain places, so we'd buy $400 worth of diapers and wipes at a time or $500 worth of formula.
cabfranc
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by cabfranc »

$2000 per month for infant care is too low. We pay $2450 in what is starting to become the far out suburbs of a HCOL. Once the child becomes 2 years old, there will be other options. But I have to say in all honesty I have never been felt comfortable with any of the significantly less expensive options I have seen. Also as I am discovering, when children enter elementary school, these "child care" costs do decrease but remain significant. In a HCOL area, before and after care and summer camps can easily run $10-$15k per child per year.
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anon_investor
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by anon_investor »

chet96 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 7:44 pm Congrats. Amazon and Costco are your friend.

You can save real money on diapers having the large boxes mailed to the house. But do NOT subscribe and save as the prices and box sizes change month to month. Add an Amazon credit card and you save more. It takes a bit of planning but set up a reorder point where you always have a reserve package. (The infant size boxes have 2-3 packages inside. Mark a package with an x. When x is open you reorder. Your tired brain will need visual queues.)

Wipes and formula at Costco are a great deal. You will be amazed how many packages you use.

Do not wait on daycare. Get on a list now. Ask your colleagues for suggestions if you are new to the area. (We live near a medical center, there are 3 facilities on campus). Spend some time checking them out as there are staffing differences. You also may have to supply daycare with diapers, wipes, and food. So plan for that expense as well.

Our first daycare made sense financially but was not a good fit. Have a backup plan.

Also figure out where the 24hr pharmacy is. Nothing worse than needing a script and having to wait for the pharmacist to fill the 40 that came in overnight.

Good luck.
+1 on Costco. On our 3rd baby, and Costco definitely has the best deals. Periodically foruma, diapers and wipes (though wipes have not really gone on sale since Covid) will all go on sale at Costo, making it even cheaper. We got the Executive membership and Costco Visa, to basically get 4% CB on all Costco purchases too.

Sometimes you can get deals at Amazon.com and Target too, but Costco is consistently the best deal for us.
protagonist
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by protagonist »

Congratulations, cope!

Clearly, people everywhere along the socioeconomic scale have babies, and the vast number of them survive.

So it's hard to say how much it will cost YOU, since there are so many unknown variables (private vs. public school for example- group vs private daycare, etc etc).

Having been there, done that, and gone through all the worrying ahead of time, trying to maximize my chances of success, all I can say is if you are sensible and loving parents it will work out, and you will figure out how much to spend and what to spend it on, mostly on the fly. You will probably wind up spending some balance between what you think you can afford and what is best for your baby- the range is huge.

The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.

Don't worry. Be happy.
aj44
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by aj44 »

My son was born in February, I budgeted $1k a month for 2021 and increased it to $1.5k per month when a last minute C-section and 3 hospital stays for my gf were needed. Tracking to come in a bit under that. This didn't include daycare as she got 12 weeks paid maternity leave, and I get 16 weeks of paid paternity leave that I'm able to use at 3 half days a week now that shes back to work, this will end up with us not having to use daycare till March of 22.

I have $2k per month budgeted for 2022 which includes day care at 3 days per week, 5 hours per day and all other anticipated expenses in a MCOL area.
mrsgoldilocks
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by mrsgoldilocks »

copenhagen227 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:52 pm For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
First, congratulation!! As someone with a 4.5 years old living in HCOL area, here is what i have:

1. Have you considered Au Pair? Not sure how difficult to arrange during the COVID.

2. You should start looking for day care ASAP. Because of COVID a lot of daycare sites reduce the number of kids in the center, so it is even harder to secure a spot than before. And good school/day care spots are like gold. and has a super long waiting list.

3. Daycare for under 1 usually is most expensive as there is usually a strict staff to babies ratio. We put our son in the Montessori Preschool since he was 2.5. It is about 18K annually 5 days 9 - 3 pm. If I need before and after care, it is another 3-4K i think. and ours is in fact a school up to 3rd grade, so the school only officially runs from Sept to mid July. If I need summer camp, it will be another 3K or so. But that's the top school in our area, so it is more expensive.
Somethingwitty92912
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Somethingwitty92912 »

Jags4186 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 9:31 am
Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:31 am Please don’t take what I say offensive. It’s not a judgement.

Why have a kid if you are going to pay for someone else to raise it?

I don’t have kids, but my wife and I are planning, and I am curious about the the thought process, because I can’t imagine it.

It seems to me that after daycare costs, the much more important loss of time spent with your child, it would make more sense for someone to take time off till they start at school.

There’s a lot of work from home options these days, an simply cutting your expenses after costs makes more sense?
I’m impressed how long it took for someone to bring this up. There are millions of children in this country who are in daycare. And there are 100s of millions of children who spend the majority of their day in school, being “raised” by someone else.

Your kids do not need to completely change every single thing about you. Someone doesn’t go through all the effort and expense to become a physician to just give them up when a kid comes along. And some people just don’t want to sit home with their child all day. It can be isolating and it can lead to problems with your spouse as disagreements about home responsibility can become a problem.

And regarding your later comment about trusting your children to strangers…our entire society is based on trust. When you bring your car in to get an oil change, you trust the mechanic didn’t mess with your brakes. When you go to the grocery store, you trust no employee injected poison into the produce.
And when you bring your kids to a daycare, you should trust they aren’t getting abused. Of course anything COULD happen, but for the most part it doesn’t.

So, by all means, if one parent wants to stay home and the financials allow it, I think that’s great. And if both parents want to continue to work, I think that’s great, too, and doesn’t make them bad parents. And if both parents have to work because thats the only way they can make ends meet, then that’s too bad, but it doesn’t make them bad parents either.
There’s so much about this comment….

There are far more children being raised by their parents I’d wager then day cars in the world. I’d take that bet. So if numbers are your argument….

Why did you go through all the trouble of having a child and taking on that responsibility for the rest of your life? Your career doesn’t need to change everything about you…

Frequently, food poisoning scares due happen by nature an human means. Yeah, I hope my mechanic doesn’t do that, I change my own break pads and change my own oil. These things take 20 minutes…

However if I need an engine rebuilt yeah, I’d have to pay an trust them I guess. Somethings in life we have no choice about, however if two drs. Can live on one dr. Income the problem is spending not income.
Somethingwitty92912
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Somethingwitty92912 »

stoptothink wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 9:20 am
Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:31 am
copenhagen227 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:52 pm For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
Please don’t take what I say offensive. It’s not a judgement.

Why have a kid if you are going to pay for someone else to raise it?

I don’t have kids, but my wife and I are planning, and I am curious about the the thought process, because I can’t imagine it.

It seems to me that after daycare costs, the much more important loss of time spent with your child, it would make more sense for someone to take time off till they start at school.

There’s a lot of work from home options these days, an simply cutting your expenses after costs makes more sense?
How is that not a judgement? FWIW, my wife intended to stay home when we had our second, but quickly realized she is a much better parent when she has a job.
I guess it’s not a judgment because clearly your spouse, a single individual, with her own life experience, personality, upbringing, can do it, so anyone can.
FoolMeOnce
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by FoolMeOnce »

Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:31 am I don’t have kids, but my wife and I are planning, and I am curious about the the thought process, because I can’t imagine it.
Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 10:16 am I gave up my career to raise my family
Huh?

Anyway, to your question:
Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:31 am Why have a kid if you are going to pay for someone else to raise it?
Sometimes that's the best thing for both the parents and the child. (And if you disagree with that, then you are making a judgement).
runner540
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by runner540 »

Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 10:16 am
aj44 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 9:20 am
Somethingwitty92912 wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:31 am
copenhagen227 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 1:52 pm For a baby between 0-2 yrs of age, how much would you budget in expenses monthly (daycare, diapers etc)? We are a dual income family of 2 physicians about to have a baby in September and want to know how much to budget.

I've heard that daycare costs can be up to 2k a month-- I'm not sure if that's because I'm in a HCOL area though. Thanks.
Please don’t take what I say offensive. It’s not a judgement.

Why have a kid if you are going to pay for someone else to raise it?

I don’t have kids, but my wife and I are planning, and I am curious about the the thought process, because I can’t imagine it.

It seems to me that after daycare costs, the much more important loss of time spent with your child, it would make more sense for someone to take time off till they start at school.

There’s a lot of work from home options these days, an simply cutting your expenses after costs makes more sense?
Of course its a judgement, just own it as we all make them.

I don't think you realize how much work an infant or toddler is, you can't simply work from home while taking care of them. I'm able to navigate around a couple of conference calls in the afternoons when I'm on paternity leave, and sometimes that is tossed on its ear due to my sons needs.

Having a stay at home spouse may make sense for your situation, it doesn't for a lot of people due to monetary need or they don't want to significantly damage one of their career prospects.
Well, we all decide our paths through life. I gave up my career to raise my family, of course I saved and planned to be able to do that, if your spending needs are greater than the need to spend time with your child…. I’d just cut my expenses, if three people can’t live on dr. Wages then the problem is spending to me not earning.

An no it’s not a judgment. You do you. I asked because it seems illogical financially, kids start school, if you can’t find a career after they start school, I question how good you’d have been at your job anyway.
Wow, lots more judgement on people (most often women) for not being able to find a good job after being out for a few years. Do you recognize the irony that you think a parent should stay home for “daycare” years, and then blaming them for not being able to find a good job when the kids are in school?

Let’s help OP with the budget and trust he/she can make the best decisions for their family.

OP, daycare is the big recurring item, plus 529 savings and supplies (diapers, etc)
I’ve gotten lots of stuff second hand but other things I’ve needed to buy new. Every month it’s something - bigger pajamas, shoes, bibs, medicines/dr appt copays. $150-200/month is a good ballpark
Last edited by runner540 on Tue Jun 15, 2021 10:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
MaxDakota
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by MaxDakota »

Depending on your working hours and how much they overlap, you may need a nanny, or a combo of nanny and daycare. Also keep in mind now more than ever, daycares require you to keep your child at home with very few symptoms of illness - just a runny nose is grounds for staying home at a lot of daycares right now. In a HCOL, a sitter might run 18/hr, a more experienced nanny 20/hr or more.
SubPar
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by SubPar »

We're in a metropolitan city in the Midwest. Our daycare, which is what I'd consider a "nice" one, is $425/wk for our 4mo old. Price goes down as kiddo ages. We're on a mostly breastmilk diet, but do supplement with a small amount of formula. We've tried a few different formula brands with varying levels of success; the one we landed on is ~$40 per canister and lasts us a while. We've had better luck with name brand diapers in terms of fit and bulk-buy Huggies at Costco -- 172ct. is like ~$50.

While we budgeted/planned diligently, there was still a bunch of up-front costs that were fairly painful. Nursery setup, bassinet, stroller, car seats, etc. All-in, we dropped multiple thousands pretty easily. Some things were bought second hand (you can find a TON of good stuff used and in good shape, FYI), but other items were bought new.

I will say, we did do a lot more takeout food due to convenience (and exhaustion) during pregnancy and first couple months post-delivery. Our discretionary spending went up a fair bit. But that was a personal decision on our part, so YMMV. Working on paring things back now to get closer to pre-baby budget.
Onlineid3089
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Onlineid3089 »

Congrats! We had our first in March after a really tough pregnancy. Best thing ever, we should have met and had kids 10 years sooner :beer

I expect daycare will be expensive, we aren't using it until he is at least 1, so no personal experience but it'd be pretty local anyway. Everything else seems to be pretty negligible. Get hand down clothes from family/friends if able, or buy cheap outfits. Seems like he only fits in an outfit for a couple weeks so even his hand me downs still look new when we have to stop using them.

Stay calm and relaxed when your kiddo starts screaming at you for what seems like no good reason. Just cycle through checking if they're hungry, if they need burped, if they need their legs worked to help poop, if they need food, or if they're overtired and just need snuggles. Eventually you'll get them to calm down and it sure doesn't help if you get all worked up while they're screaming.
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by LadyGeek »

I removed several contentious posts related to parenting. Parenting discussions are off topic (relationship issues). See: Acceptable Topics and Subforum Guidelines
This is an investing and personal finance forum. We also maintain a subforum that allow our members to discuss consumer goods and services and recreational activities. Anything else is considered "Off Topic" and is not acceptable on this forum.
Please stay on-topic, which is a budget.
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leeks
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by leeks »

Talk to your neighbors to learn the going rate for nannies in case you become uncomfortable with the daycare setting for a newborn (a lot of parents don't know before their child is born how they will really feel about this).

There are valid reasons some families (who choose not to have a parent stay home) prefer a nanny or au pair over daycare, particularly in the first year. Two doctors would be able to afford that, if it became a priority, so it is worth knowing the cost ahead of time to have it as a backup option.

If your work schedules are not confined to typical weekdays, a nanny or au pair offers a lot more flexibility in addition to the individual attention and schedule adapted to your child's needs. I'd say $30K/year minimum for a nanny but it could be more in your area.
phinanciallyfit
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by phinanciallyfit »

Echoing others about getting on daycare waitlists now. You can also look into a nanny or au pair (I believe an au pair runs about $20k). We live in a fairly low cost of living area and full time care for an infant runs $1400, so I'd expect to pay more than $2k/mo in a HCOL area. Also, we put our daughter on the waitlist for one daycare the day I found out I was pregnant and she still barely made it in for when she was 11 months old (there were no spots before that). The other daycare we liked, we put her on the waitlist at 4 months old and she is still on the waitlist at 2.75 years old. We had to use a nanny for the first year.

If the lactating parent wishes to pump, I highly recommend the Freemie cups with the spectra breast pump. They can be used with various pumps (buy the compatible ones), but made pumping 1000x easier. Wish I knew about them when I had my first.

We cloth diapered, which is actually much easier than most people think. It is really nice not to have to deal with blowouts on clothes and car seats, etc., which only ever happened with our 2 kids when they were in disposables. Baby gear can range from inexpensive to very expensive. You can buy it used (babies outgrow things quickly) or pay full price. Plenty of options there. We actually skipped most of the things people claim you should have and found it nice not to have the clutter. How much things cost will depend on what you want and your lifestyle (i.e. if you are somewhere like NYC where you walk a lot, you may want a nicer stroller, if you hike a lot or live somewhere with lots of gills, probably a carrier, etc.). We spent less than $1k on baby supplies before our first baby, as most of the high ticket items (co-sleeper, car seats, and the fancy high chair, which is still used daily 7 years later) were gifted to us. I don't think we bought anything for our second (except the Freemie pump cups).
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Harry Livermore
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Re: Having a Baby-- Budgeting?

Post by Harry Livermore »

Miguelito wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 9:13 pm
When our kids were small, I recall people complaining that school was almost over and college was coming. I used to tell them I could not wait for them to go to school so I could stop paying for daycare. Expenses of course really don't end there. After daycare, the bills got lower but we still paid for before and after school care, summer camps, school vacation week care, etc. Then non-school activities start. Music lessons, town sports, club sports, etc.
+1 on this. Our youngest just finished his freshman year of high school, our daughter in the middle her freshman year of college, and our oldest just graduated college. So we are at the other end of the field, near the goal line.
Budgeting for us has always been forensic; that is, we look at the past year, analyze our spending, and find specific things to trim or otherwise save on.
We were lucky that my wife's dear auntie ran an at-home, licensed daycare, so although we paid her market rate, we always knew the kids were loved and cared for by a family member. Once they started school, before- and after-care at the elementary and intermediate school was the norm, and then sports, music lessons, summer YMCA camp, etc. It all adds up.
I will note that, for the older two, we used cloth diapers and it was much cheaper. A service came to the house twice a week and took away the old and left the new. Those two kids also "trained" a little faster; I'm not necessarily connecting those two dots but I had thought about a connection. Of course, we used plenty of Huggies when we were on the road, at the zoo, the museum, etc.
Enjoy the ride! People always say "you can't believe how fast it goes", and while that IS true, lately I have been thinking about our next phase in life and it's hard to even remember how my wife and I were before kids. So the passage of time feels both great and small at the same time.
Cheers
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