How Much Does it Cost to Have a Baby?
My wife and I are first time parents and we are now 6-months into the “parenting” process. So we’ve made it halfway through year one…hooray us!
I made it a goal to track all of our child care expenses so I could truly report on the cost of raising a child. I invite all of my personal finance readers to follow along our journey as I diligently track all expenses involved in truly raising a child these days in middle class America.
Prior to us having a child I did some research and the consensus was that it costs roughly $14,000 per year to raise a child, which equates to roughly $240,000 (without college). Don’t get me started on how much college will cost for my child…
So the consensus was from my research that it costs $14,000/annually to raise a child in 2017. Well, we are halfway through year one and we have spent just over $3,000 on our baby girl thus far. It is very early and she is still very young, but we are on pace to spend less than half of that $14k per year average. However, its obvious that what we spend in year one will (and should be) far less than what we’ll probably spend in, say, year 8 and/or 12 and beyond when expenses really rise to raise a child. But I like the pace we are on and currently setting.
How Much Does It Cost to Raise a Child?
We are six months in and thus far we have spent $3,093 on my daughter in total. We have lucked out and received a number of hand-me-down clothes and toys, as well as a ton of gifts and gift cards from our baby shower that are still holding us over.
Albeit, we’re about out of gift cards now. However, we are still going strong on the diapers we received via our baby shower diaper raffle. That was still a great idea, because I remember pre-child my biggest (expense) fear was the cost of diapers. I truly thought we were going to be spending like $100 to $200 a month on diapers. I was that naive to the costs of raising a child and how much diapers were.
Speaking of diapers, last month I wrote about how our baby girl was still in newborn diapers, which we were out of from our baby shower diaper raffle. Well, she has finally grown enough 6-months in to fit into the size 1 diapers that we have an abundance of. So we shouldn’t need to buy diapers for the next couple on months (at least).
Baby Swim Lessons
Outside of paying for our nanny last month, our largest child care expense in August was swim lessons. We paid $256 for 18 lessons, which equates to just over $14 per lesson. Each lesson is only 20 minutes.
We knew we wanted to start our daughter early in swim lessons to get her used to the water and truly enjoy it. She was just over 5-months old when she took her first swim lesson, and she actually wasn’t even the youngest in her class.
Thus far she loves the water, loves her lessons, and her mom and I enjoy alternating each week as we get into the pool with her for swim class. Its indescribable how much fun it is watching your baby play in a pool and back-float as a 6-month old infant. Worth every penny for the lessons.
We use a part-time nanny to watch our daughter two days a week. We consider ourselves very lucky though, as we have a nanny who comes to our house twice a week, a nanny our daughter loves, who really doesn’t costs us that much.
My wife is off two days during the week and then a family member watches her another day, so we only need to “pay” for two days of child care. We are 4-months in to paying for a nanny/child care, and have spent a grand total of $1,840.
Cost to Raise a Child in 2017: 6-Month Old
- 1st month = $414
- 2nd month = $105
- 3rd month = $545
- 4th month = $643
- 5th month = $520
- 6th month = $866
- Since inception (March, 2017) = $3,093