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Thread: How much does it cost to set up baby?

  1. #1

    Default How much does it cost to set up baby?

    I mean what are the "set up" costs for a baby?



    OH and I are planning to TTC in the next 12 months and if we have the luxury of planning pregnancy we figure we might as well use it and plan for a baby financially as well. But I don't know where to start.

    I've drawn up a budget on just OH's wage. I'd like to have our car and credit card paid off (7k there) and if possible have 6 months "bills" money in savings just in case. I work out all of our bills (and things like gifts, hair, clothing, holiday slush fund etc) annually then divide it by payday and put aside that amount. I'd like to save enough for 6m just in case we find things a bit hard or some unexpected happenings occur. Plus have enough cash to buy all the baby stuff.

    Aside from that, I have NO idea how much a baby actually costs! How much roughly does it cost to set up a baby for the first few months (like initial clothes, nappies, linen, furniture, toys, carriers... I'm sure there is plenty more!).

    I know it varies according to quality and if you buy/source second hand stuff but just roughly how much? I estimated 5k but am I way under here?

  2. #2

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    I can't give you an exact cost of our set up but I only earn $500 a week and we have managed by getting what we can second hand (but safe obviously). Pram is second hand but looks like new and has all the safety standard like wrist strap and etc ($100), portacot with bassinette is new but was on mega special ($100), we are renting so have no room set-up costs like painting or etc. Flat cloth nappies can be cheaper than disposables (although we went for MCNs which is a bit $$ up-front), clothes are mostly 2nd hand except for what my grandparent's have bought in various sizes. Car seat will be new. Most other little bits and pieces (linen, steriliser fluid, towel, washcloths, blankets etc) are brand new but bought from non-baby stores like Kmart (lol) so they are a bit cheaper.

    So I can probably safely say that we havent spent $2000 yet.

    Oh - slings and carriers. Hubby got himself a 2nd hand sling. I got myself one new WAHM made sling off ebay ($35) and one 2nd hand ABA easy-sling carrier thing off ebay too ($16).
    Last edited by angelaartsstudent; March 13th, 2009 at 12:27 PM.

  3. #3

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    this is a VERY objective question. everyone has different income levels, different ideals for what they feel they NEED for their baby. some people are comfortable using second hand furniture, others won't. some will go all out to decorate a "nursery" others won't. some will get by just with a cot and will co sleep, others won't

    it's so hard to work out what is going to cost - people tend to "furnish" their needs based on their own income and budget - babies don't need a lot - a lot of it is more for mum and dad's benefit! having said that, some "convenience" products are things some people find a necessity, some would find that same item a waste of money.

    i would sit down and work out what is important to YOU to have for your baby. will you breast feed or formula feed, cloth nappies or disposables etc. have a look around and get a rough idea - will you be happy to use second hand furniture etc - if so, scope out ebay for a rough idea on the "going" price for those items. if you can't bring yourself to use second hand, will you go kmart/target furniture or will you want higher end stuff (boori etc)

    as i said, it's VERY subjective and will, in a lot of ways, depend on your own requirements. i'm the first to admit we've paid out more for furniture on our baby than we "needed" to - but we also spent a hell of a lot of time, money and emotion getting her, and we decided if we could spend thousands of dollars on treatment, we'd get furniture that worked with the rest of our house (antique/older looking stuff) - we could have used second hand or simple white furniture, but we went with what WE wanted - but it's not for everyone...

    HTH's

    BG

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by briggsy's girl View Post
    this is a VERY objective question.
    BG
    Totally agreed.

    Plus my post was biased becuase we are renting and have no choice but to NOT totally furnish a room for a nursery. Everything must be easy to transport.

  5. #5

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    As you said it can cost lots of differnt amounts depending on what u want to buy. i.e some cots are $1500+ then others you can get for $200 from big w, target etc you could buy a pram from the same kind of shops for $180-$250 others can be thousands! So it is very hard to say yes you could do it for $5000 and you could easily do it for less, I think most people would probably spend around $3000? but you could also spend a lot more. iykwim

    I think the est way will be to have a look in different shops, look on the net and see what kind of products you would be looking to get and then you'll have a better idea!

  6. #6

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    It depends on how much you can/want to spend! It could cost you less than $1000, or it could cost you over $5000. We decided what was important for us. We spent $200 on a cot + mattress. We didn't go expensive as we planned on co-sleeping. We spent $200 ($150 + $50) on a baby carrier and a sling. We saw that as a really important purchase. So it just depends on what you value as a mum-to-be. A cot to us wasn't essential, so we didn't want something expensive to just sit unused. Our carrier and sling we really important and we spent more because we knew we'd use it more. As it is i think we have, we use it pretty much every time we go out, and I use the cot rarely. We co-sleep and the cot is next to the bed but she ends up with us anyway LOL

  7. #7

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    When I was pregnant for the first time, DH and I got a few things second hand and a few things new. We did not want to spend a lot of money (we didn't have much to spend), so we basically avoided specialist baby stores and looked at the department stores like Kmart, Target and Big W, and bought things when sales were on. But ultimately it comes down what you consider important, and what you don't. Some things I hadn't even thought of that I might find useful ended up being invaluable, like the rocker and steriliser my mum bought us, and the ton of body suits and bibs that DHs mum bought us. Other things, like decorating the room and buying a ton of toys were things we did not see as that important. It is really a personal thing - you can get everything your baby needs without spending a lot of money, or you can spend a fortune.

  8. #8
    paradise lost Guest

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    DD was a surprise baby. During the PG and after birth XP was in and out of work. I earned a lowish wage and paid a lot of the household expenses out of it. We didn't save money, we bought items. We bought her wrap, her nappies (cloth, second hand off eBay) and a few basic clothes (vests, babygro's) and wool for me to knit a few things (shawls, cardigans). We were given bottles, a steriliser, a breast pump, a feeding pillow, a cot and mattress, a pram and car seat, masses of clothes... Basically we spent very little but she had everything she needed. So there is no "set-up" cost for a baby, in the old days nappies were torn up towels and babies slept in the bed where they were conceived. Spend what you want to spend.

    Bx

  9. #9

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    Thanks guys! So 5k will most definitely cut it, I'd hope to be well under and the rest can go into savings. I'm not wanting to have state of the art stuff and actually like the thought of preloved furniture - stories they could tell . My friends recently had twins and they were overwhelmed with how many things they got given or sold at a ridiculous price, in particular friends of friends of friends who had multiples. All they bought new was the cots. But I didn't know if they were just lucky! LOL.

    I'm a bit of a control freak and I'm just stressing that because we're still renting, have mass savings etc etc that we won't be able to afford a baby. I know lots of people have very little (material things) and are fine.

    You all just reassured me that we'll be fine and that there is never a "best" time to have a baby Sometimes I think it would be so much easier if I accidentally fell pregnant. Then decisions would be made for us he he.

    Thanks again..

  10. #10
    DoubleK Guest

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    the thing to remember as well is that while it costs to 'set up' for baby.. they continue to cost you money!

    one thing i did when i was pg with DD was buy clothes up to size 1... and then once she was born even bigger sizes! it was really handy to have bigger things already on hand! they grow out of things so quickly! (esp the 000-00-0-1 phase) i tend to do a 'seasonal' layby, where ill layby clothes for the upcoming season, but i tend to already have a few bits and pieces in er wardrobe. at the moment she has 3 dressig gowns hanging in there, that are wayyy too bug, but will one day fit!

    i think if you're a saver.. you're lucky! start a baby savings account that you can dip into when you need it!

  11. #11

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    Krystal Ball - I am so a buy in bulk and in advance type of person. I used to work at Pumpkin Patch and, while expensive, they do have really good sales twice a year. They want to sell EVERYTHING from the current season so there are different rounds of pricing sometimes even twice a week. Obviously the range gets smaller as the prices do but you can get stuff for Kmart prices. There was always heaps of mums that would come in and buy an entire wardrobe for the next year. I'm so doing that!

    I bought my niece a winter woolly jacket for about $20, it was 3 sizes too big but she got about 5 years wear out of it as she wore it big, grew into it slowly and then had a year where it fit, she just couldn't do up the buttons . Now her friend's little sister has it. Not bad for $20.

    Wish I still got a staff discount though....it was so wasted on a 20 yo single gal! although very shush, I did buy one babies outfit because it was just the cutest thing I've ever seen. I planned to give it away as a present but no one I know has had a boy so I guess I better keep it now LOL, it is in a non-descript bag wayyyy at the back of my wardrobe! Problem is, in my 20 yo wisdom I bought it in 000! Wish I'd got a bigger size.

    As for having a baby kitty, I have a kitty kitty for my cats. I put aside some $ every pay so when I need to buy litter, food or meds (I usually buy in bulk), I just dip in. I also put some aside in case one needs a vet visit. Perhaps I'll do something like that with the baby, at least at first until I get a handle on what and how much to budget for every day type of stuff.

    Oh and it might also help if I get pg first, or at the very least come of the BCP...lordy am I a planner or what? I drive myself (and everyone else) nuts!

  12. #12

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    a great tip is to look in your local classifieds/shopping centre for people selling second hand stuff...i went round expensive baby shops and even places like target/big w and wrote down the brand names/models of all the stuff i wanted then looked in the Quokka (WA classifieds) and Ebay and found everything near new or only a yr or two old for a fraction of the cost
    e.g. steelcraft enigma reverse handle stroller new $350, got one a yr old in perfect cond off ebay for $100
    helps that DPs brothers daughter is 2 yrs old so we got her old change table, rocker etc, and DPs nana found our cot on a verge junk collection! we fixed it up and repainted it and its great (check it out in my BB gallery)
    HTH, GL

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krystal Ball View Post
    the thing to remember as well is that while it costs to 'set up' for baby.. they continue to cost you money!

    one thing i did when i was pg with DD was buy clothes up to size 1... and then once she was born even bigger sizes! it was really handy to have bigger things already on hand! they grow out of things so quickly! (esp the 000-00-0-1 phase) i tend to do a 'seasonal' layby, where ill layby clothes for the upcoming season, but i tend to already have a few bits and pieces in er wardrobe. at the moment she has 3 dressig gowns hanging in there, that are wayyy too bug, but will one day fit!

    i think if you're a saver.. you're lucky! start a baby savings account that you can dip into when you need it!
    Exactly what I did.

    Baby clothes - local giveaways, hand-me-downs, or EBAY!! You will bulk bundles from ebay for about $20-$100 depending. I bought ALL of her clothes and went through, sort out what we liked and didn't, then resold or gave away those and kept the rest. All of Charlottes clothes up until size 1 cost me $120. And she has waaay more than she needs lol. I still have things that are too big for her now, that wont fit her for a couple of years even.

    We got a package cot, change table, change mat and cot mattress (innerspring, chiropractic) for $600 from a baby shop here in perth. Great value if you cant see the point in spending $1000 for a Boori cot even though they are the stuff of nursery fantasies! lol


    So yeah, how long is a piece of string?? Our pram and bassinette was about 3rd hand, $50 for the both of them from a friend. Port-a-cot was $50 from a garage sale. I went to the art shop and got some canvasses and paints for about $60 and did the artwork for her room myself, got a nappy bag from my mum, as with blankets etc.
    The cloth nappies I bought over time during the pregnancy, but mostly since she was born when I knew what size she was and what works and doesn't work for us. Nothing worse than spending heaps on masses of nappies that may never fit or work for your bubba.

    Basically it could cost you next to nothing, or more than your $5K...lol Entirely up to you and what you want. Once you work out what you are prepared to spend and what you are prepared to spend the big bucks on, then you will be able to get a better idea

    Good luck TTC!! How excting!!

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by dantri View Post
    I'm a bit of a control freak and I'm just stressing that because we're still renting, have mass savings etc etc that we won't be able to afford a baby. I know lots of people have very little (material things) and are fine.
    That was me before our first pg - kind of planned but not - which we lost. It then made me really start to freak that we couldn't possibly "afford" a baby then one of my best down to earth friends told me that you can never "afford" a baby you just work it into your life just like all your other expenses. We are still renting, are pg with #2 and since we fell pg with DS1 we have saved more than ever in our lives plus have cleared up more than $30K in debt. Don't stress you will be able to do it - in our experience having kids has turned out to be the best thing ever and has made us so much more financially responsible.

    Plus, like a lot of the others have said, you can can get soooo much near new stuff for a fraction of the original cost so you don't have to go into debt to have children.

  15. #15

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    You are being very forward thinking in what you are doing. I think the best thing you can do is be debt free ie. credit cards etc before having a baby. Also buying things as you see them while they are on special is good especially big ticket items like prams, cots and car seats. Budgeting for no income and having the savings account is also a great idea.

    Remember you will get loads of gifts especially if you have a baby shower - I got a gift voucher for my modern cloth nappies which was the best present so it's good to have an idea for things like that if people ask what you want/need.

  16. #16

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    Babies don't really care about brand names and "stuff" either so they can be very cheap, teenagers on the other hand are VERY expensive LOL

  17. #17

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    With nappies, it'll cost around $1000 to set up in cloth (MCN) nappies, and I'm not sure about sposies. Count on about 6-8 nappy changes / day to begin with and a box of 100 huggies is around $50 (ish). If you're planning on using sposies, then stock up now - toys'r'us have good specials, and most shops let you exchange for larger sizes if the box is unopened.

    Even if you're planning on BFing, plan for FF. 2 tins of formula @ $30/week until they wean (roughly) and if you want to express, then hire a pump (better quality & cheaper).
    Either way, you'll need a steriliser and some bottles.

    Clothes are a big "gift" item as are bunny rugs and toys.

  18. #18

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    I agree... be as debt free as possible. DP and I are TTC, we are getting all our debts excpet mortgage (damn!) paid off, money aside for bills and emergency money (cars breaking down, pets to the vet etc) and we are hoping to live off 1 wage shortly and the other wage can go into savings and extra mortgage repayments, and I would like to take 1yr off work, so trying to save money for the lost income during that time. As for nursery furniture and baby items, look around. We have decided to layby 1 item at a time, we have a pram on layby, the cot will be next. (we decided to layby while we are both working and can afford it) I won't be buying baby clothes until I am pregnant and further towards the end of pregnancy, only because my SIL and good friend were given soooo much in the way of clothes and things, that they both have enough clothes to do until there babies are 12months old. My SIL has said that she got so much stuff that half of it her DD has not even worn. friends, family will go baby crazy and buy heaps, so why double up?
    It is hard not to buy up big now...oh the little baby clothes are oh so cute! But be strong, I would rather be able to afford to take 12months, maybe more off work than have more baby items than I can poke a stick at!

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