This following post was written by my friend, Joshua Crum, father of three. He’s also the Lead Credit Repair Expert (to my knowledge, he’s still a team of one, lol) of http://www.RebuildRepairCredit.com/. In short, he helps people get rid of zombie debt, figure out how to manage their current finances, and get them on the right path. I met Josh at FinCon16 and he’s been a real friend for these last couple of months – this is an in-real-life guy actually doing this stuff…not just one of those spam companies we all delete immediately. 🙂
First, becoming a new parent is stressful enough. One of the biggest issues is budgeting as a new dad or parent. There is so much new stuff to consider. It’s overwhelming at first! So, I strive to make things easier and more predictable. Here is where I simplify the chaos as much as possible.
First comes food, one major expense that adds up very fast. Most new parents do not count on an increasing food budget.
If you are lucky, at first mom can breastfeed. Not only is this great for baby but for your family’s budget as well. It literally saves gobs of money.
Consider that most formula starts at about $20 a can. This adds up! Within a few short months, you can count on 2+ cans a month. That’s an easy $40 per month most new families did not count on.
Next are baby cereal and many containers of assorted baby food. Again, these seemingly minor expenses (under $1-2 per package typically) add up. We have spent $100 on baby food in a month per child with ease!
Knowing ahead of time, you can budget properly. If needed, WIC and state assistance can help.
To begin, the fuel cost increase does not seem like a big deal. That is until you are going to and from the hospital frequently. Even more frequently if it’s a high-risk pregnancy.
We spent no less than $100 on birth-related fuel and parking alone. Pre-birth trips to the hospital cost us far more – around $500. Even after birth, there are follow-up doctor appointments, shots, and trips to the free babysitter. (Thanks, mom!)
Lastly, there are the extras added to the budget.
- Car seat (if you can’t get one for free using your insurance)
- Diapers and wipes
- Dirty diaper pail
- Bassinet and/or crib
- Breast pump (again, if you can’t get one for free with your insurance)
- Baby bath and bath supplies
You will run into other stuff, but that’s the core. Please if you can think of any other major items, comment below so we can include them!
Budget Blessing – The Baby Shower
If you are lucky again, you have great friends and family who will throw a baby shower. With our first daughter, we had a scary massive baby shower. It was so large I had an anxiety attack at the full parking lot! This gave us a much-needed running start.
If you can’t count on a shower, maybe a diaper party for dad? That’s when the guys meet at a bar and everyone brings diapers and wipes for the father-to-be. Or sometimes they meet at a park with a keg and appetizers. Good times!
Crystal’s Baby Cost Savings Suggestions
If baby showers of any sort aren’t going to happen, check out Crystal’s list of ideas below! You won’t have to break the bank!
- Friends or family with kids who are past the baby stage
- Nextdoor.com (free site where you can connect with neighbors)
- Garage sales
- Goodwill and/or thrift shops
- Facebook mommy or even daddy groups
- Buy Nothing Facebook groups
- Moving sales
- Clearance racks at stores for babies and kids
Baby Budgets Can Happen
The budget woes of being a new dad are easy to overcome. Yes, there are many new items in the budget to consider. But do not let that scare you. With a healthy view of these incoming costs, you can avoid unexpected expenses. Remember, these are the best times of your life. So, be sure to take time to bond as a family without stressing about every little cost!
Your family deserves the very best. So just relax and enjoy the amazing gift of parenthood. We sure are! Sending love and well wishes from our family to yours.
FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!). Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!