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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:
EhUp · 30/10/2020 23:08

Babies don't need a lot spending on them from month to month (once you've got the cot, pram, car seat etc) so they aren't expensive in that sense but they have a massive impact on your finances because you need either a non-earning SAHP or you need to pay £££/month for a nursery/childminder

JamieLeeCurtains · 30/10/2020 23:08

Lost career years & income are the tricky things tbh.

Ohalrightthen · 30/10/2020 23:11

If your bills are £500 and you can't live of £1300 a month you're doing something desperately wrong.

Duemarch2021 · 30/10/2020 23:12

To be fair i hate my job lol so im happy to not keep that open 😅 ive been studying too to be a teacher so maybe I'll have a few years out with baby....then start fresh as a part time teaching assistant and try and figure out nursery

Ooh another question!?.... if you are on maternity leave and apply for a mortgage, will the morgage company accept your maternity pay as an income??? Xx

OP posts:
RedMarauder · 30/10/2020 23:15

The two biggest unavoidable expenses for me that I couldn't are:

  1. Childcare - we pay £7 per hour. Our childminder is actually now cheaper than the other nurseries and childminders in our area of London who all put their prices up after lockdown.

2. Car seats - we are on our second car seat as you don't want a shit ones. The first came with a travel system but the second would have cost about £250 new if I didn't have various vouchers and discounts that brought the price down to approximately £160.

In regards to other things:
  1. Breast feeding - you may or may be able to do it. You may or may not need a breast pump. Manual pumps aren't expensive but then you have to get storage bags or bottles. Bottles are cheaper as you can sterilise them but they take up more room in the fridge/freezer.

2. Nappies - you may able to cope with reusable nappies. Regardless expect to change your baby about 10 times a day to start off with then about 5 times when they get to about 16 months. If you are using disposables even though you are using less nappies as they are bigger the price doesn't go down.
3. Clothes - you should be able to get second hand bundles and clothes of people. However I noticed at around a year to about 14 months people couldn't pass on so many clothes. Simply because their child destroyed them before they grew out of them. We lucked out as 2 children we got the clothes off spent a couple of months in a hot country which coincided with British summer.
4. My heating bill was the same
Duemarch2021 · 30/10/2020 23:20

We've been really lucky in the sense that my parents are buying pram set and DPs parents are buying a next to me.. but in asda we've bought sleepsuits etc for £5 per pack and we've got bottles, bibs, changing mat for £5 .. just couldn't seem to see where the expense was.. maybe my friend was just trying to scare me Hmm happy to buy second hand bouncers and high chair etc too when she gets older or even tkae hand me downs 😃 maybe my friend just wanted posh stuff for her kids

OP posts:
wontonwoman · 30/10/2020 23:20

Expensive things are from new:
Car seat plus isofix
Cot mattress
Nappies; it depends on the brand. Sometimes the cheaper brands don't work for your baby. Pampers can be £9 a pack I believe.
Wipes (you'll need lots); again depends on the brand. Water wipes are expensive but I like Morrison's nutmeg sensitive. I use water wipes for nappy changes when out and about but all other times I use the nutmeg. At home just cotton balls and pads from Asda and water.
Formula ( I breastfed my first and intended to BF my second but after 6 weeks I threw in the towel as baby wasn't having it and started losing weight. Baby was quite preemie so weight was important HV said to start giving bottle) my formula has just increased to an eye watering £15 a pack. I noticed the price increased about 2 months ago by a lot. I need a new pack every week.
Other items, bottles plus steriliser can be £60+ depending on what you choose
Moses basket and stand or an alternative
Clothes, I'm always buying clothes because they grow so fast!
You might want a bouncer, a jumperoo, a swing, a baby gym, a nice change bag, a changing station, a bath, a travel cot etc etc.
In my opinion kids are expensive! All the best x

YourWinter · 30/10/2020 23:26

Breastfed babies equipped with preloved clothes and equipment aren't expensive at all. Borrow maternity clothes if you can.

MrsMarrio · 30/10/2020 23:35

My baby is now 17 weeks and I feel like you live to your income, so me and DH had a good income, and enjoyed going out etc. Now I'm on maternity and adjusting to another little person that lives off our income.
Its expensive to buy everything you need but secondhand stuff is an option too.
Nappies I started off with pampers as I'm a bit of a brand snob until the midwife made me have an epiphany and said 'what you paying £8 on a pack of nappies for all's babies do is shit in them' I buy Aldi premium nappies at £3 a pack now and actually prefer them to pampers
I wanted to breastfeed but that didn't work out as my son was massive, had low blood sugar when he was born so they had to give him formula so my milk supply just never caught up and buying formula is like an extra £10 on your weekly shop if not more.
The thing I find most expense is buying clothes! He's only 4 months but is already in 6-9months! I'm forever buying the next size in clothes!
Not to mention putting money aside for him for his future savings

MuchTooTired · 30/10/2020 23:40

On paper, babies shouldn’t cost too much I don’t think. BF, £1 packs of nappies, cotton wool and warm water and a couple of blankets and you’re done.

Until you actually have the baby (or in my case babies). Then BF might not work out, so you buy bottles. Then baby gets colic and you part with another £20 for 4 special bottles, that don’t fit in the £20 steriliser, so the one that they do fit in is £80. You’ve already spent £100 on a breast pump but your milk supply doesn’t play ball, the baby won’t stop screaming so there’s £15 on multiple dummies because they disappear to be found 6 months later when they’re too small, the nappy brand you bought doesn’t fit your baby’s bum properly so it’s pampers for now, whilst waiting on the bottles arriving from amazon you have to feed the newborn baby bottles of ready made formula, infacol dentinox and gripe water with every bottle in a desperate attempt to help the colic, then baby gets nappy rash. The brand you buy doesn’t work. So you end up shelling out £60 trying to find the magic brand that does the job. Which isn’t the same for both kids.

If you get lucky and it all goes to plan then I don’t think a baby costs much at all. If it doesn’t, it can add up quite quickly whilst you try and find what works for your baby!

YourWinter · 30/10/2020 23:43

I would just add to my post to say I didn't cope with cloth nappies and my biggest expense was Pampers.

mrssunshinexxx · 30/10/2020 23:43

Babies aren't expensive but childcare is or losing a salary Id

coronafiona · 30/10/2020 23:51

Yes they are expensive. As are children. But you'll just find a way to cope, most people do. It'll be fine.

FizzingWhizzbee123 · 31/10/2020 00:18

What @MuchTooTired said! I breastfed but it was so intense that I ended up pumping so DH could share the load..... so that involved a pump, bottles, teats, bottle brush, sterilising bags, milk storage bags and bottles, nursing pillow, also ended up with nipple shields, Lanisoh cream etc. Not to mention I was a leaker and went through a ton of breast pads plus needing extra nursing bras etc. Then DS ended up with reflux and colic so there were all sorts of things we tried there. Yeah, our breastfeeding journey wasn’t that cheap in the end!

Ended up spending a fair whack on a decent extended rear facing car seat. Our pram was expensive but could have been done more cheaply. Video baby monitor has turned out to be one of our best buys (despite me thinking video was overkill at first), but that was about £120.

And now childcare costs more than our mortgage.

You might think you’ve accounted for everything now, but I think Amazon Prime came to our door every day for the first few months with extra stuff we ended up buying (partly necessary, partly sleep deprived 3am feed shopping delirium 😆)

FizzingWhizzbee123 · 31/10/2020 00:19

Oh also we ended up paying out for Pampers as they were the only brand which suited DS. He got sore in the cheaper nappies due to his sensitive skin and other styles just seemed to leak on him. And yeah, paying out for barrier creams etc can add up too.

OnlyFoolsnMothers · 01/11/2020 09:21

It’s childcare and loss of income that’s expensive, travel systems cost a fair bit- baby room furniture is as expensive/ inexpensive as you want it to be.
Lots of people I know never had a car before having a child- makes life so much easier!

But looking back, the baby years are the cheapest- childcare at nursery near me is £45-£110 a day, then they start school and finish at 3pm so you still need childcare, school lunches, trips, uniform- all kids activities once older cost a lot!

Calligraphy572 · 01/11/2020 09:39

The biggest costs are NOT consumer goods (pram, nappies, carseat etc).

The Big Costs:

Housing. Do you have enough space/bedrooms/ do you want a garden/ live near good schools/ live near a park. If you want or need to improve your housing, how will you save up if one of you is not earning (or earning v little)?

The hit your earning potential will take. You want to teach - how long will it take you to qualify? How will you pay for childcare? If you want to stay home, what will that mean for your financial independence and later career progression?

Childcare. Hugely expensive. It could take all of your earnings to afford it, though maybe still worth it to keep you in employment and moving up the earnings ladder.

Later, of course, dc become much more expensive:
Education/tutors/sports/hobbies/music lessons/swimming lessons/ school trips/ extra airline fares and bigger hotel spaces on holiday, etc. Obviously not all of these will apply!

Duemarch2021 · 01/11/2020 11:30


Congrats!!!! Are you having a little boy or little girl? I'm due 7th march with a little girl, how about you? X

Thanks guys.. you're all giving me some more perspective on this! And yes, to be fair we will need another house! Shock we have 1 bedroom at the moment but this was something we were saving for anyway.. x

OP posts:
Perfect28 · 01/11/2020 12:13

Due march 9th with a little boy, also training to be a teacher! 😁

PolarBearStrength · 01/11/2020 15:46

I really do think it MASSIVELY depends on your priorities and preferences.

Baby clothes are pretty cheap in supermarkets and charity shops, and you get a lot of gifts but you could equally spend £40 on an outfit from Jojo or Frugi etc.
You can pick up a good quality secondhand pushchair for £50, or a new one for £150, or spend £1000 on something fashionable. You can even choose not to bother buying a pushchair at all and just get a decent sling/carrier.
You can buy a bog standard baby bouncer (which isn’t even essential but comes in handy) for £10 on marketplace or spend £150 on an all singing, all dancing one.
You can get a decent ERF car seat for £150-200 new.
Some people like to have multiple cots, Moses baskets, co-sleepers etc. Others are happy with a cot in the bedroom and a baby box, pram bassinet, or blanket on the floor for daytime naps.

You can get really suckered into thinking that you need all sorts of gadgets and gizmos but it really is as simple as having somewhere to sleep, something to feed them with, and something for them to wear.

rslsys · 01/11/2020 16:50

If I remember correctly, when we had our brood (30+ years ago now!).
It was reckoned that the cost raising a child to age 18 was around £180K with all things factored in such as baby costs, lost salary, etc etc.

We had 3 . . .

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