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To think we can live in a one bed flat with a baby?

(61 Posts)
PostieGal Sun 24-May-20 10:57:19

I'm 19 weeks pregnant with our first baby, we live in a spacious one bed flat, OH thinks we need to move to a two bed flat before baby arrives (it would be a struggle financially to do it now). I think we have plenty of space to stay put for about 12 months because baby would be sleeping in our room anyway for the first 9 months or so. His concern is his sleeping pattern (paramedic - all kinds of day/evening/night shifts etc). I say at least I'll be home on mat leave for those 9 months so can look after baby in the living room, or take him/her out while OH is sleeping.

Am I being naive to think this could work? Surely plenty of people live in one bed houses/flats when they have their first baby? We are in Hertfordshire - London commuter belt. He works in north London.

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Winegumaddict Sun 24-May-20 10:59:24

I expect lots do but it must be very very hard. If you move now I would 100% don't underestimate how much space a tiny person can take up.

BernadetteRostankowskiWolowitz Sun 24-May-20 11:00:09

Yanbu to plan on living with a baby in a 1 bed. Completely doable.

Yabu on thinking this will work with a Paramedic. It will become beyond tedious trying to keep quiet while he sleeps at all hours between shifts. Even things like forgetting to top up the nappies in the living room and feeling like you can't sneak into the bedroom and grab one. Or baby voms all over you both and you need to run the shower and get fresh clothes and hour into his main sleep.

It won't be so bad if there wasn't lockdown and you could go out to classes and groups during his main sleep time.

Flippinfurloughed Sun 24-May-20 11:00:37

I think you would be fine till your baby was a toddler to be honest. Ds is 8 and still mostly in my bed! Working shifts complicates things, but the difference of noise waking him in a 1 bed compared to a 2 bed will be pretty much the same. I’d def wait!

SnuggyBuggy Sun 24-May-20 11:00:43

How spacious is your living room? Could you fit a sofa bed or travel cot?

BernadetteRostankowskiWolowitz Sun 24-May-20 11:02:41

Yeah true about the noise. It's only worth moving to a 2bed for the noise issue if the bedroom dh will be sleeping in is on another floor.

WorraLiberty Sun 24-May-20 11:04:22

It worked for me.

When I had DS1 we had a one bed flat and I too was married to a shift worker.

If the baby wouldn't settle in the night, I used to take him to the living room, where we had a spare moses basket.

Adding an extra bedroom wouldn't have made a difference to the sound levels of him crying.

daisypond Sun 24-May-20 11:05:46

Completely fine, and very normal in my experience.

FiveShelties Sun 24-May-20 11:05:56

My husband and I lived in a one bedroom apartment and it is fine whilst you are both working similar hours and similar routines. The thought of being in that same apartment with one working shifts and the other trying to take care of a young baby sounds really tough.

Sound travels very freely through an apartment.

TrickyKid Sun 24-May-20 11:06:34

Yanbu totally doable and lots of people do it.

houseforanartlover Sun 24-May-20 11:06:54

We did it for the first year, had cot in our room and was fine. Can you get a decent quality sofa bed in case it's too disturbing for your partner? I wouldn't buy or sell a property right now if I could help it.

SheldonSaysSo1 Sun 24-May-20 11:08:24

I'd try to move before the baby is here as it will be harder to do after. However, you can live in the one bed flat just carefully consider the noise issue. If you have days where you fancy staying in you will find it so hard not to disturb your husband. It's easy to say you'll go out whilst the weather is nice and you haven't had a baby keeping you up all night. In practice you may prefer to stay home more often.

RoosterPie Sun 24-May-20 11:08:42

We were in a one bed when our DD was born, but I agree with PP the difficulty will be the shift patterns. I think for you a second bedroom would be really useful.

belfasteast Sun 24-May-20 11:09:25

Totally doable, you just need to minimize the amount of stuff you get for the baby. There are lots of 'essentials' that aren't really essential at all.

stanley10 Sun 24-May-20 11:12:09

I think yanbu as we are about to do the same thing. Were planning to move, a job offer for dp fell through because of covid and lockdown.

All the stuff we have for baby doesn’t take up that much room and his cot is by our bed. I actually think delaying a move is good - you don’t know how your priorities will change so leaving a while to see what you want in a new place with a baby is positive.

Anyway that’s what I’m telling myself! smile

mizu Sun 24-May-20 11:12:53

Yep,both normal and fine. We did it for the 1st year or so with our 1st.

EsmeeMerlin Sun 24-May-20 11:13:42

I live in a one bedroom flat with a 6 year old and a 2 year old. We live in London where rent is extortionate. We could easily afford to move out of the area to somewhere cheaper and bigger but the truth is our whole family lives in our borough and we would rather have a small place but lots of family support than move somewhere bigger but with no family 5 minutes around the corner. We are also on the council list for a bigger place.

Our boys have the bedroom and we have a sofa bed. It’s been fine. We are also careful with what we buy-good storage and try to limit clutter.

bluefoxmug Sun 24-May-20 11:13:55

we did until dc2 was 2.

but we had 'normal' 5-9 jobs and didn't need to respect a shift worker's sleep pattern.
I think in your case your dh is right, unless he can sleep (almost) undisturbed somewhere in the flat.

Jellycatismyspiritanimal Sun 24-May-20 11:14:48

We're doing it now and there are often times I really wished we had moved when I was pregnant. Mine is 5 months. Many babies are noisy even when asleep. Mine grunt, murmurs, kicks her legs and even screams when she is asleep, we cope with white noise and one of us in earplugs but I don't remember the last tim either of us had a good night's sleep. It can be done but depending on how the baby is, it can be very, very hard!

june2007 Sun 24-May-20 11:16:40

Do you have the choice? I think if you have the chance to upscale then I would.

snowybean Sun 24-May-20 11:17:29

We do it (albeit with 9-5pm job). I keep nothing in the bedroom that's to do with baby so if DH is sleeping I have access to it all. As long as you can close doors quietly then it should be fine. Our bedroom is off the kitchen, which is definitely the noisiest room of the house.

You can always move if it gets too much in future, but for now it works for us!

TheMobileSiteMadeMeSignup Sun 24-May-20 11:23:59

Unfortunately babies cry, wake up at odd times, and need cared for. They don't respect shift workers or anyone else's need for sleep. My DH is a shift worker as well, DD was in our room and he just had to get on with it. I had a EMCS so couldn't physically do as much as I would have liked early on and even though my mum stayed with us a lot to help she had to go home too.

Changing mats etc don't need to be kept in a bedroom, so you could set up the main storage in the living room and bathroom and have a small supply in the bedroom for overnight.

He can put in earplugs if he is off a night shift and needs to sleep during the day, regardless of house size it's unreasonable to expect you to keep a baby silent.

Don't let him think that being a shift worker will absolve him of ever doing night time wakings though. You need rest as well. If you are breastfeeding, he changes the nappy after the feed and sorts baby, don't become a martyr for the sake of his precious sleep.

Congratulations, hope your pregnancy goes well.

vanillandhoney Sun 24-May-20 11:28:47

It can work but it's certainly not something I want to do, I'm afraid.

How long are you planning on staying in the 1-bed place? Is your bedroom big enough for a cot as the baby gets older and needs more space? If your bedroom isn't big enough for a changing table etc. do you really want to keep all of that in your living room or dining space?

I would certainly move if I had the option. We live in a small two-bed terrace and I wouldn't want to live in a smaller space with a child unless I had absolutely no other option. For starters, we don't have much storage, and there's no way we could fit a cot and baby's things in our bedroom on top of all our things!

Don't underestimate the amount of space a baby takes up!

RandomMess Sun 24-May-20 11:32:51

The first few months with a baby will be fine. However it takes times to move so I would start getting the ball rolling now.

PostieGal Sun 24-May-20 11:44:29

Thanks everyone, a real mixed bag of answers, which is pretty much reflective of our own opinions.

Yes we have lots of space in living room and bathroom for travel cot/nappies/clothes etc and OH doesn't wake if I use the shower/washing machine etc. We're quite organised with lots of space saving storage already, and have cleared loads out ready for baby's things.

If we moved, the second bedroom would be directly adjacent to the main bedroom (yes all on one floor)... the two bed flats are a similar total size to the one bed flats... you lose living room and bedroom space by upsizing.

I have more concern about his day shifts than his night shifts because me & baby will be in the same room as him overnight regardless of size of flat, as one poster said baby can be noisy in the night anyway.

My main issue with moving now is the affordability. It would put financial strain on us, we would need to get a sizeable loan for surveyors/estate agents/solicitors fees, early exit fee on current mortgage etc. Which I'm not 100% sure we'll be able to afford the repayments on. Especially not knowing 100% what a new baby actually costs on a weekly/monthly basis.

So... from those who've done it and managed... what tips do you have for living in a one bed with a baby? Thanks for saying keep all the baby stuff in the living room... I've made space for that already 👍🏼

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