We Calculated How Much a Baby Costs Per Month, and, Oh Baby, Is It a Lot. Corinne Sullivan

As exciting as it is to welcome a new addition to your family, it’s also majorly taxing on your physical health, your mental health, and — of course — your finances. Money may not be the first consideration for those thinking about welcoming a child into their lives, but we probably don’t have to tell you that a baby is a major investment. Yes, they’re cute. But they also have a lot of needs and, as a result, a lot of expenses — many of which you may not have considered. How much does a baby cost per month? Let’s break it down.


Related: We Calculated How Much a Baby’s First Year Costs and . . . You Might Want to Sit Down

After that initial investment, you’ll have to budget for those recurring expenses, which include diapers, nursing and feeding, health insurance, child care, and clothing. You might be surprised to learn that babies go through an average of six to 12 diapers a day, according to the National Diaper Bank Network, and that can set you back $70 to $80 per month. And if you cannot or choose not to breastfeed, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children calculates that formula can cost up to $150 per month. In your baby’s first year, you can expect to make six visits for evaluations and immunizations, plus a few additional visits for illnesses, and the cost will vary dramatically depending on your healthcare policy. Then there’s childcare. According to a Care.com survey, the average weekly childcare cost for a baby in 2019 is $199 for a family care center, $211 for a daycare center, and $596 for a nanny, which equals out to a range of $796 per month to $2,384 per month. Clothing costs will also depend on your needs, as you could spend an average of $60 a month, according to Investopedia, though that largely depends on your family’s needs and income. Bottom line: babies are expensive. Before you make that major life decision, take a careful look at your finances, since you’ll need an average of $1,500 a month in your first year. Babies are life changing, and wonderful, and cute as can be, but for something so small, they sure cost a heck of a lot.

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