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Old 02-23-2010, 12:02 PM
 
43,017 posts, read 50,591,511 times
Reputation: 28797

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I get the feeling you are feeling overwhelmed with the possible financial expenses.

Here's a great calculator for first year baby expenses.

Baby Cost Calculator - Calculate the Cost of a Baby - I-am-pregnant.com

I was surprised how low it came out when I chose the absolute necessities (diapers, wipes, no breast feeding, baby only eats what I eat (instead of baby food) --- $646/year -- $53.83/month. Granted, that doesn't include copays for doctor visits and prescriptions. And I didn't calculate furniture since most people get that stuff from family members at baby showers. Add on the car seat and furniture and it's still within reasonable range.

Lets say you don't work for three months while staying home to care for newborn after delivery. (I went back to work in 6 weeks, but I don't recommend it because it was exhausting.) If you saved the amount of money you need from your income to pay bills plus estimated baby expenses for three months, that would be the amount of money you would need to have in the bank to cover expenses for paying bills and caring for the baby for the three months while you don't work.

When you say that your part time income is needed to just pay bills, consider what expenses you have that are the result of working and going to school. You won't have those expenses when you are staying home with a baby. Although you don't have credit card debt, you probably waste a ton of money on nickle and dime purchases at places like convenience stores or buying drinks from soda machines. I know we spent a few hundred dollars per month on that crap until I got out budget under control. And you say that you are paying your student loan payments. Applying for a deferement would free up more money monthly.

When you are ready to go back to work part time---before you start working full time in teaching and earning decent month---you could work evenings and avoid the childcare expense until you are earning a full time salary.

Again, I'm not trying to push you to have a baby. I'm just tossing out ideas for you to consider. It seems you're afraid of the unknown.

Calculating baby expenses and taking a serious look at your household budget to find wasteful spending will help put this into perspective so it's not overwhelming. Even if you decide you have to wait one more year to have a baby during the summer of 2012, you'll at least have a good idea of what you need to do to prepare for that. And honestly, the summer of 2012 isn't a bad idea because you'll have paid summers off if you will have a full time teaching job.
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Old 02-23-2010, 01:27 PM
 
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Cool. According to that calculator, I spent about $371.00 with my last one for her first year. Probably less than that.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:26 PM
 
2,913 posts, read 4,243,477 times
Reputation: 3986
I'd suggest you spent some time doing your own calculations regarding what it costs to have a baby.

Start with what the local OB's and hospital's charge and figure your portion. Unless you have top notch insurance, you could be paying out of pocket anywhere from $1000 to $10,000 depending on what's covered under most normal circumstances for your pregnancy and delivery bring. Add complications and it can go up tremendously. (friend had a baby with heart issues and her first two bills were 6 figures with many more after that)

After that you have to consider what you want to have on hand when you bring home a baby. Some things are needed immediately, others later and some not at all. You just have to decide what you can live without, what you must have and what you can accept as previously used items or hand me downs versus brand new. (Car seats should always be new, never used)

Then you can factor in whether or not some things may come as gifts. Some people have very large families or lots of friends who supply most everything a baby needs or parents want, while others have far less opportunity to get gifts given.

So, start pricing items to get an idea what it will take to bring home a new baby. Car seat, diapers and wipes whether cloth or disposable, breastfeeding and support items or formula and bottle needs, clothing/blankets, crib or bed sharing needs are basics all babies need.

Other things that are not necessarily must haves but will probably be considered by most new parents- bassinet, monitor, swing, bouncy seat, exersaucer, playyard, high chair and baby gates.

And that's only for the first few months.

Toys are another area that gets added in with things like mobiles and rattles, dolls and cars, puzzles and legos and bigger things like climbers or swingsets. That can get very expensive very quickly.

Once you have an idea what it will take for bare minimum to bring home baby and what you think you might want, then you'll have a better idea what it will cost you. One thing I can say though is that very few first time parents could spend as little as $646 in the first year unless they have remarkable insurance, no complications and gifts and hand-me-downs galore. Those who use disposable diapers and formula feed will likely spend that much alone on those two items.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:32 PM
 
2,605 posts, read 2,646,932 times
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My guess is that most of the people here who are giving all the advice about waiting and calculating, etc. are people who did not do that themselves. They most likely had their children when they FELT LIKE HAVING THEIR CHILDREN regardless of anything else.

You will find a way to make it work if you got pregnant tomorrow or if you waited 2 or 4 or 6 years.

Go with what you feel is best for YOU. We all make it work. We cross each bridge when we get to it.

Having a baby is not something that is so earth shaking that you need to worry. No matter when you decide, IT WILL BE OK.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Texas
28,131 posts, read 24,170,946 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thegirlinaz View Post
We would like to start a family sometime in the near future, but feel like we just canít afford it! We wouldn't make enough money to pay all our bills for me to be a SAHM and my part-time job right now I will have to quit in August (for student teaching). If I stay home we will basically be losing money every month and if we pay a babysitter or daycare we will still lose money every month (since I don't know when I will find another job). Yeah, we will probably (have to) wait, but then I feel like we would need to wait another one to two years so that I wouldn't be pregnant my first year at a new job.


We donít have credit card bills or anything like that to pay off first; just regular mortgage payments, car payments, student loans, and similar bills. We donít eat out a lot or buy tons of unnecessary stuff right now, so even if we cut that back we wonít be saving much.


Basically after all my ranting and going on (boo hoo for us) my question is, how do people in our situation ever afford to have a baby?
They don't. But they have the baby anyway and make it everyone else's problem.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
26,527 posts, read 17,884,435 times
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We didn't buy one single NEW thing for our first baby. And we did not have showers or family to help us. I shopped at Mothers of Multiples Sales twice a year and got great values on clothes, gear and toys. In fact we didn't buy anything new except shoes for about 4 years. Kids outgrow their clothes way before they get worn out. At first I was sad about it but not long when I looked at how much I saved.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:42 PM
 
2,605 posts, read 2,646,932 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stan4 View Post
They don't. But they have the baby anyway and make it everyone else's problem.
That's crap. This young woman is finishing up her masters and her husband also has a degree. I doubt very much a baby in their house will be 'everyone else's problem'.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:54 PM
 
406 posts, read 986,146 times
Reputation: 207
This may be harsh to hear, but if you can't afford a baby yet, you need to wait to have one till you can. That's what people do. That's what your future child(ren) deserve.

Some people here sound so young and so desperate...the vast majority of people I know don't have babies until they're well into their 30's...when they CAN afford it. What's the hurry, anyway? Children are expensive, and until you know you can give your child a nice life, not a rough, hardscrabble life; you need to take appropriate precautions.
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Old 02-23-2010, 03:06 PM
 
179 posts, read 291,050 times
Reputation: 76
Everyone's situation is different and only you can make this decision in the end. My husband and I left home and moved across country at 19 to where his biological father lived. At 21 we got married. When I told my mom we were engaged she told me that if I promised to get my college degree before having kids she would pay for the wedding. I promised her that. At 28 I finally graduated from college. At 31 I had my first child, 33 my 2nd and I am currently 12 weeks pregnant at 35. To answer your question, Yes I am nuts to have 3 kids 5 and under.

You are so far ahead of the game on college than I was. I would have never imagined that my husband and I would not have kids for 10 years. There are good and bad to waiting this long. I am so much more secure in my job (13 years), marriage and finances than I would have been in my mid-20's. However, it is also harder to keep up with their energy after working all day. All I can say is good luck and I will pray that things work out the way you would like them too.
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Old 02-23-2010, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Whoville....
22,316 posts, read 17,093,213 times
Reputation: 11758
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoExcuses View Post
My guess is that most of the people here who are giving all the advice about waiting and calculating, etc. are people who did not do that themselves. They most likely had their children when they FELT LIKE HAVING THEIR CHILDREN regardless of anything else.

You will find a way to make it work if you got pregnant tomorrow or if you waited 2 or 4 or 6 years.

Go with what you feel is best for YOU. We all make it work. We cross each bridge when we get to it.

Having a baby is not something that is so earth shaking that you need to worry. No matter when you decide, IT WILL BE OK.
Your guess is probably wrong. Most people I know waited until they were ready and part of being ready is being able to afford a bably. I would never advise someone to have a baby they cannot afford.

My husband and I were married 16 years before we had our first. I wanted to have them sooner but the family counselor didn't think it was a good idea to have babies while my step sons were still home so we waited until both boys graduated from high school and then a couple of years more to get me settled in a new career.

I'm willing to bet that the people who are advising she wait and get her ducks in a row either did just that or didn't and now regret it. Either way, it's sound advice.
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