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How much does it cost to raise a child monthly?

(26 Posts)
Kelcat9494 Sun 26-Jul-20 20:01:47


I think I'm over thinking this as I'm working out all my finances and there's only been two of us for the last five years so I'm stressing but how much does it cost to raise a child from a new born to like ten I guess, I mean bare minimum I don't mean like Christmas and clothes etc as I've started putting £20 a week away from now for all that extra stuff. I'm just curious to see how much people spend? We have about £980 a month disposable and then once some loans and cars are paid in 4/5 years we'll have £1400 disposable but my dad doesn't seem to think that's a lot so I don't know if I was a weirdly expensive child or if I need 2 other jobs haha.


OP’s posts: |
Aroundtheworldin80moves Sun 26-Jul-20 20:05:03

Biggest cost for first few years is childcare. That varies greatly.

Kelcat9494 Sun 26-Jul-20 20:06:34

Sorry, I mean without childcare. University covers a lot of it for me and then afterwards my parents and grandparents are happy to look after little one until it hits 3 and I can get free hours x

OP’s posts: |
Bitchinkitchen Sun 26-Jul-20 20:06:56

Entirely depends on what your plans are. Will you be giving up work, paying for nursery/childminder, depending on family, etc? What are your school options, indy/private or state? Will you need a larger house? A larger car? What is important to you in terms of hobbies/skills? Music, sports? Will you need to buy equipment/instruments etc? What about holidays? How important is travel abroad to your family?

You can have a child on very, very little money, as long as you're happy to make significant sacrifices in quality of life for all of you. If you want to sacrifice less, you need more money.

FightMilkTM Sun 26-Jul-20 20:19:25

Childcare / loss of earnings by going part time is the biggest kicker.

Baby set up is expensive unless you buy second hand / inherit from family.
We spent circa £2000 on getting everything, £1000 of which was the pram. Everything was pretty mid range except the pram which was mamas and papas. (Fellow parents, is mamas and papas mid range or expensive?! confusedgrin).
Breastfeeding is kind of free but you might want a pump which can run into £100’s and you may need to buy shares in nipple cream at first.
Or you have the cost of formula, but I don’t know how much it is.
Nappies can be relatively cheap assuming a cheap brand ‘works’ for your baby in terms of size and shape / allergies etc. You can go the reusable route but it’s a larger one time purchase. We do a mix and luckily for us Lidl and aldi nappies work fine for our baby in terms of disposables.
I also spent A LOT on classes to keep me sane on maternity leave (baby sensory, baby massage, swimming lessons), again totally optional but I would probably be spending that money on counselling if I hadn’t have spent it on classes grin

Even with an older child the day to day costs of food etc aren’t the financially difficult part, it’s housing (no of bedrooms), cars, holidays etc which really add up / will affect your current lifestyle, plus the fact that they get fussier with brands for clothes so you can’t just put them in primark. (Obviously you can put them in primark!)

EatCakeBeMerry Sun 26-Jul-20 20:54:26

Childcare costs a fortune! We use cloth nappies and I breastfeed so no formula or monthly nappy costs but upfront the nappies cost a lot. They don’t need much toy wise and buying 2nd hand reduces costs but it’s easy to get carried away! Excluding childcare I probably spend around £100 on average but that’s swimming sessions, clothes, days out such as zoo, medication etc. The swimming is the most expensive part but I love the pool we use, the teachers, smallness of sessions etc so for me if rather pay more for 1 group we both really enjoy than small amounts for multiple activities. It’s the initial cost of things like car seat, cot, furniture etc that was expensive and I guess the older they get the more costly they become as toys, clothes, shoes etc all increase in price

wagtailred Sun 26-Jul-20 21:00:28

Childcare/loss of earnings
We found each child added about 20% to the grocery shop (which included nappies and toiletry stuff)
The first added about 12% to our utilities as well (extra washing, in more so more heat and light)
We needed a bigger place to house the child so that cost more
Clothes/toys/entertainment are very variable as are things like cots and then beds as you can get them second hand.
The car seat was something to buy brandnew.

IloveBeefJerky Sun 26-Jul-20 21:08:18

We bought everything secondhand and had clothes, cot, pram, car seat for £400.

Biggest cost is childcare, that's a huge expense.

Goyle Sun 26-Jul-20 21:13:05

0-5 your child will grow very quickly. Luckily we had older cousins who donated many clothes, which in turn might have already been at least second hand, and that we donated on to the next baby.
There are shortcuts. Lean on family and friends to babysit for a morning/afternoon/one say a week. Look out for second hand baby clothes sales, like those run by the NCT. Ask people who are handy with knitting needles to get busy. Set up an Amazon wish list, and tell your friends about it. Second hand furniture is OK, but go and inspect it first. You don't need a top and tail bath.

There are a lot of products out there that claim to a) make your life easier and/or b ) enhance your baby's development in some way. It's usually bollocks. A newborn only needs to be able to hear you. As they get older, rattles, crinkly things are good, then teethers for sore gums. A blankie or a soft toy for comfort. Done.

My baby is now nearly 14 and I shudder at how much crap, literal crap, we bought. Most of which we never used and donated to charity or another family. She's much more expensive now that she needs her phone, her laptop for school, her specialist stuff for art, her Nintendo, her penchant for 50s dresses, hair cuts and colours, make-up, school goes on.

Yellow1949 Sun 26-Jul-20 21:15:32

Not including childcare, housing and council tax various websites put the cost of raising a child to 18 Between £75-102k, which breaks down as £347-472/month.....but as any MNer will tell you a breast fed baby can cost you almost nothing Extra (you’ll be paying for housing and heating anyway and they don’t take up extra space and you can get almost everything 2nd hand) until you start Weaning. Teenagers can be wildly expensive. If you have same sex children they can share a room, if you have a girl and a boy that becomes tricky.

Embracelife Sun 26-Jul-20 21:20:36

You can get a whole new praM set under 200

I e you can spend a lot or a little.

Go to supermarket look at prices of baby clothes nappies etc.
Look at cost of swim lessons or activities in your area.
You can spend a lot or a little.
Wi you get annual passes for local attractions or just go the park for free?
Childcare will cost.

Gingerkittykat Sun 26-Jul-20 21:22:10

How long is a piece of string?

It depends on so many factors, are you someone who will want to spend a lot of money on activities for example.

It is possible to give a child a good upbringing when money is tight, but obviously having money for extras makes it easier.

ivfdreaming Sun 26-Jul-20 21:23:33

If you're not paying for childcare which will be all
If not more of your £980 a month disposable income then kids cost very little to raise when they are small - If you make your own meals rather than buying all the baby food pouches it's just the cost of nappies and wipes and clothes which I would say you'd get within your £80 a month child benefit

Once they are at school I'd say the cost increases as clothes, shoes, activities become more expensive

Megan2018 Sun 26-Jul-20 21:29:33

When I go back to work it will be £1200 a month until she’s 3, then a bit less. Considerably less once in school as childcare costs will be minimal. Maternity leave cost me £10k plus we spent about £3k on baby stuff.

Our childcare is £700 after the tax free childcare and the net loss in income from my reduced hours (going back 4 days) is £500. It’s a £10k paycut but we will get child benefit and I will pay loads leas tax and pension so net loss is lower.

OnlyFoolsnMothers Sun 26-Jul-20 21:34:59

£980 including food?
Mat leave and childcare are very expensive but even once at school you will need to factor child care around school hrs or loss of earnings, then all the school holidays.
Remember mat leave will mean you will be home more, (though appreciate we’ve mostly all experienced this with covid)- so bills go up. Will you need a new car? Bigger house? Once you start taking holidays during school half terms, costs go up etc.

airo Sun 26-Jul-20 21:38:00

Childcare is the biggest cost for me. Then there's food, clothes, fuel going to and from childcare and play dates etc, nappies (I use cloth), wipes, toys.

I probably spend around £900 a month, but £750-£800 of that is for childcare.

PineappleUpsideDownCake Sun 26-Jul-20 21:42:20

3k on baby stuff!

It just goes to show it can be what you want it. We got some beautiful toys and clothes from NCT. A new sling, bedside cot second hand, nappies and not a lot else! Def under 1k. Possibly a few hundred!

I thought babysesnory and babyswimming were overpriced mums groups and went to the very nice one with homemade cake in the church hall for £1.50 and an nct under ones group. I later ran one. As a teacher Im aware thise groups are more for parents socialising than baby development so the cost is whatever you want to spend socialising!

However at 10 we have phones, sports clubs, more expensive uniform, days out.

Megan2018 Mon 27-Jul-20 08:48:49

@PineappleUpsideDownCake most of our stuff was 2nd hand!
But there was a specific pram we wanted new which was £1k (needed something farm proof that fitted in a small electric car boot) and we needed 2 car seats at £250 each so thats a big chunk on just 3 things.

We have second hand cot and furniture but that was still a few hundred with new mattresses. I kept a spreadsheet of it all. Full price the whole lot was over £5k when you add in all the toys etc in the first year or so.

PineappleUpsideDownCake Mon 27-Jul-20 08:55:40

We couldn't have afforded 5k at that stage.

I think people work to their budgets.

Bitchinkitchen Mon 27-Jul-20 09:03:13


*@PineappleUpsideDownCake* most of our stuff was 2nd hand!
But there was a specific pram we wanted new which was £1k (needed something farm proof that fitted in a small electric car boot) and we needed 2 car seats at £250 each so thats a big chunk on just 3 things.

We have second hand cot and furniture but that was still a few hundred with new mattresses. I kept a spreadsheet of it all. Full price the whole lot was over £5k when you add in all the toys etc in the first year or so.

Jesus christ, i think we spent less than £700, including reusable nappies.

Goes to show there are always things to spend money on if you have it!

Ihaveoflate Mon 27-Jul-20 09:09:01

You make it work. A lot of people with very little money have babies and seem to manage ok.

We got all baby stuff passed on by friends or bought second hand, apart from cot mattress and car seat. You can get nearly new stuff very cheaply from table top sales or on the usual online selling sites.

You sound very responsible, but you may be overthinking it a bit.

grafittiartist Mon 27-Jul-20 09:13:45

Wait for the teenage years!!
There's a lovely cheap ish bit through primary school, where you can find free stuff to do and hand me down clothes. But teens seem to need a constant stream of cash and gadgets!

However- if I'm going to be skint- kids are the best reason!!

OnlyFoolsnMothers Mon 27-Jul-20 09:24:35

It just goes to show it can be what you want it. We got some beautiful toys and clothes from NCT. A new sling, bedside cot second hand, nappies and not a lot else! Def under 1k. Possibly a few hundred!

I love how on MN it’s either spend 3k or buy second hand for 1k. I spent under 1k on new stuff.

user1493413286 Mon 27-Jul-20 09:50:00

If you don’t include clothes or childcare then I would say my 5 month old costs £50ish in forumula and maybe £25 in nappies, wipes and creams plus another £20-30 in new baby equipment or toys that I buy each month.
3 year old costs probably £40-50 in food although that’s hard to work out for sure plus £20 on ballet lessons, £20 on toys or whatever I might buy in a month and the rest depends on what we do in a month as activities.
In terms of buying baby stuff at the start it all depends on what you buy and what you can get given

user1493413286 Mon 27-Jul-20 09:51:39

Just to add I find that child benefit covers the majority of clothes and I put a little of it away for Christmas and birthdays

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