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71 replies

Duemarch2021 · 30/10/2020 21:48

Confused First time mum to be here!! Can people please give me their opinions on whether a baby is expensive? I keep hearing from some friends "Oh babies are sooo expensive, you just wait and you'll see!" And then from others "Oh babies hardly cost anything don't worry" .. I've not spent much on baby so far and am 21 weeks, me and DP just can't figure out why they would cost so much? Nappies at £1 a packet and breastfeeding (hopefully) im just very confused.... one friend told me there's no way we will be able to survive on one income when the baby is born Hmm partner works full time and bills come to £500 odd a month im sure we'll manage??? X

OP posts:
SylvanianFrenemies · 30/10/2020 21:51

£1 for a packet of nappies?! If only.

In general babies are pretty cheap if you breastfeed. Prams/buggies are pricey if you want new ones.

ChanklyBore · 30/10/2020 21:52

Babies don’t need stuff, so in that way they aren’t expensive.

Babies do need 24/7 care, and in that way they are very expensive, as you need to pay someone to do this or sacrifice an income.

Babies also turn into children, teenagers and adults, which have varying levels of expense, but none are cheap.

Frequentcarpetflyer · 30/10/2020 21:52

They don't have to be expensive at all, or you can spend a fortune! Obviously if you can get second hand equipment that really helps! Formula is about £40 a month, so yes breastfeeding is a good idea!

FizzyDizzy121 · 30/10/2020 21:53

Babies are not too expensive after the initial outlay for cots, prams etc but children and teenagers are very expensive

Nackajory · 30/10/2020 21:53

It's not the baby that was expensive but the drop in income on maternity leave. Childcare when you go back to work is definitely expensive. All worth it IMO. You just have to prioritise. Babies don't care whether they're wearing new designer stuff or charity shop bargains. Teenagers, on the other hand....

justanotherneighinparadise · 30/10/2020 21:54

Babies are not expensive. Teenagers are!!

Echobelly · 30/10/2020 21:55

I just don't think it matters, you have to have to baby whatever if you want one!

As it was we didn't spend loads I'd say - I got a lot of big furniture items and baby monitor (which we didn't really used in the end as we were in a 2-bed flat) via freecycle. I bought reuseable nappies second hand (though tbh still used disposables at night). I got given hand me downs mostly by relatives. I didn't buy unnecessary stuff like bottle warmers, or room or bath thermometers or bloomin' baby wipe warmers.

If you think you can manage it, I'm sure you can!

TBH the expensive bit is the childcare, if you're doing that later!

ohidoliketobe · 30/10/2020 21:56

New born babies are not expensive. It's once they hit 9 months... Childcare or reduced income if you don't return to work.

HazelWong · 30/10/2020 21:57

You can get so much secondhand or free.

But childcare or losing an income is huge

eurochick · 30/10/2020 21:58

It's the childcare that's brutal. We both worked full time in long hours jobs so had a nanny which is expensive. Our daughter is six and we've spent around £150k on childcare so far. Nursery is obviously cheaper but still a huge chunk of money.

HavelockVetinari · 30/10/2020 22:00

Nappies for a quid a packet?! As if!

Bf is definitely cheaper than formula, but my baby woke every fucking 45 mins till 6 months, at which point he changed to every 1h, which continued till we sleep trained at 19 months...

I would've gone insane without being able to express using a breast pump so DH could take over for a while so I could sleep. Breast pumps are around £100.

Almost all of DS's clothes are second hand bundles from eBay, but stuff like shoes (from 12-18 months onwards) are crazily expensive because second hand are already moulded to someone else's feet.

nimbuscloud · 30/10/2020 22:01

Childcare and salary sacrifice can be cripplingly expensive.
Clothes, cots, travel systems are varying in cost.
Breastfeeding is free, formula costs.

xyzandabc · 30/10/2020 22:03

Does that £500 a month include rent/mortgage?? If so, where do you live? I'm moving!

Babies themselves do not cost a lot at all. You can choose to spend a lot if you wish but baby really doesn't care.

What does cost a lot is loss, or reduction, in earnings of one partner, childcare, bigger car, bigger house, if any of these things are needed.

Then as they grow, extra food, clothes, clubs, classes, school uniform, school dinners, school trips..........biggest expense always comes at the same time the washing machine or boiler breaks. Add wear and tear to house and appliances.

Then the optional screens, tablet/laptop/phone/games consoles, money for socialising, petrol to drive them about, bus/train fares.

Then holidays have to be during school holidays so you're paying for an extra person, or two, or more, during the peak time so holiday expenses double or triple what a couple would pay.

Then driving lessons, car/insurance, uni fees/rent......

Not saying all children need or even should have all of these things, but it's just things to consider, it's a lifetime commitment rather than how much a baby actually costs in its 1st year.

Oh and time, my god, they take up a hell of a lot of your time, whatever age they are!

Krook · 30/10/2020 22:04

Babies aren't expensive, but teenagers are off the bloody scale

Hellothere19999 · 30/10/2020 22:04

Yeah they’re pretty cheap. It’s more the loss of an income and the being at home with the heating on and needing food etc that’s expensive. You can buy most stuff second hand and don’t need to bother with fancy clothes coz they grow out of it so quickly.

NerrSnerr · 30/10/2020 22:05

Childcare is hugely expensive. Once they start doing swimming lessons, gymnastics, football etc is expensive.

yikesanotherbooboo · 30/10/2020 22:05

Not working and childcare are expensive but babies and young children do not need to be expensive beyond that.

missmouse101 · 30/10/2020 22:06

Babies aren't but my god, older children and teenagers are.

Pipandmum · 30/10/2020 22:06

Babies aren't expensive after you get the pushchair and car seat. It's the childcare mainly if the parents are both working. Once they hit school then there's loads of parties, activities, clothes, clubs...
My kids are teens. My daughter's main cost to me is food and school fees (as she lives in my house so not counting that). My teen son however loves to spend and even though he has a part time job now he still costs more than his sister (other than school fees), and if I add up all the things he has broken growing up (several windows, a TV, countless gaming controls) through boisterous play and FIFA rage, then I can say kids can be quite expensive.
You also tend to do more things that cost money - theme parks etc - to entertain them during holidays.

SkyeIsPink · 30/10/2020 22:07

A packet of nappies is nowhere near £1 what are you on lol

And babies need to be changed several times a day

Admittedly, baby himself was not expensive, it was the childcare. We were paying £1,000 a month at first. A friend of mine in London was paying £1,800 for 4 days full time.

ChanklyBore · 30/10/2020 22:10

Today was a reasonable example. Went out for lunch. To feed us as a couple would have been about £15, but the bill was nearer £40 because of children and teenagers. Six months after kitting out the oldest child, more clothes are needed because they are about 4 inches taller. Child is now taller than many adults, and needs adult sizes. Even sticking to supermarket brands we managed to spend £70 on a couple of pairs of trousers, some jogging bottoms and a pair of pyjamas then £32 on a pair of shoes. One needed new wellies for school, £16. Middle child needs some specific medicines and one needs eczema cream. Did some online shopping for the oldest’s birthday. Swimming lessons came out of my account (75 a month) and of course the weekly shop.

I’ve dropped at least £300 today on expenses I wouldn’t have had if I didn’t have children and they are all pretty basic requirements- cheap lunch out, clothes, healthcare, teaching them not to drown and a birthday present. Not even a particularly expensive day.

Asiama · 30/10/2020 22:10

Babies don't have to be expensive. I think we probably spent about £700 in the first year including big purchase like pram, cot etc. However, we lost about 50% of our income during the first year. When he started going to nursery, while our income went up to 100%, the nursery fees are about 20% of our net pay every month. I can see that costs are starting to increase as he eats more, needs more clothes as he grows, needs more of each type of clothing as he gets more dirty etc. And that's before we get to any clubs, classes, swimming, trips etc. On the other hand, we save money as we are too tired to go to the cinema or restaurants Grin

SqidgeBum · 30/10/2020 22:10

Babies dont need to be expensive, but certain things do cost; new carseat which you 100% should NOT buy second hand (£150), nursery furniture (£75 second hand), maybe trading up your car if you find it very small for car seats and the buggy in the boot. Nappies in Aldi are £1 for a pack of 24 newborn ones, but you will go through them in about 3 days.

Childcare is insane. You are talking at least £45 a day, sometimes £60 upwards depending on where you live. That diminishes your second income massively til the kid is 3, and then its 30 hours 'free' which can be just subsidised rather than completely free hours. Also, as they get older, its harder to find second hand clothes so you are forking out maybe 50-80 quid every 6 months for new vests, trousers, t shirts etc from Morrisons. As PPs have said, it then goes to activities and toys as they get older, and teenagers are crazy expensive.

However, if you want a kid, you make it work. Its always worth the cost, and you just work with it making sacrifices such as holidays, clothes for you, a nice car, meals out etc.

Honeyandapple · 30/10/2020 22:11

Haha £1 nappies? Show me. If true, they must be terrible!!
Only pampers or morrison own brand worked well on my DC. Neither were £1 a pack 😂

Babies can be expensive if you're buying everything new. But if getting second hand or hand me downs it's not so bad. But for example, my baby's travel system cost £950 and that wasn't the most expensive.

Also losing a wage while on maternity leave and going part time there after meant I had less money. So I wouldn't say babies come cheap. At all. But you can try to limit the expenditure on the unnecessary.

gmailconfusion2 · 30/10/2020 22:13

Asides from £17000 drop in salary, and if friends are finished and have baby stuff going spare, like baby clothes we were given, cot we were given, pram, plus toys and clothes £200 on the car seat, £40 on mattresses, £26 on baby bottles and £50 on reusable nappies. £3 on sleep sacks, £5 on a aldi breast pump, £15 on a baby sling and £25 on reusable wipes. I'm still using the baby washes from the freebies. So at four months she hasn't cost us a lot, but we've been lucky. Other than mattress, bottles and seat everything is 2nd hand. They don't really need a lot at this stage.

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