Planning a baby, having a baby, and raising a baby is an expensive business. Having a baby is life changing and will also have a serious impact on your finances.
Figures from insurer Laya Life have revealed that the average cost of raising a child in Ireland to the age of 21 is around €105,321. It’s not cheap.
The first year of a child’s life can be very expensive. Between strollers, cots, car seats and more, the costs add up. A BabyDoc Club study found that Irish parents spend over €10,000 in the first year alone. The survey highlights that, on average, parents spend €515 on diapers alone in the first year.
I’m sure most parents will appreciate how easy it is to spend money in these early days. It can be difficult to be home alone with the only caller of the day being the An Post delivery man. Next, Amazon suggests you need a mini vacuum-like device to get snot out of your child’s nose. It’s a thing.
As a first-time parent especially, it can be very tempting to want everything high-end. As a second parent, this desire is usually replaced by the need to sleep. There’s also a second realization that nappies don’t always have to be Pampers and the used Jumperoo will do the job just fine for the few weeks it needs.
When it comes to baby spending, it’s important to step back and see the long-term picture.
However, something to consider would be a baby gift registry. If you would be brave enough. Marriage registries are commonplace in America, and there’s a lot to be said for using a registry to have a baby. Would you be comfortable forwarding the link of your baby gift list to family and friends?
It would easily avoid having a wardrobe full of baby clothes that you may never use. It would also make people happy to know that they are getting something that you would actually use. However, although practical, there is of course something that has prevented them from becoming commonplace in Ireland.
Second-hand shopping can also be a lifesaver when it comes to babies. New prams and pushchairs are expensive and the reason is that they are built to last.
If you’re investing, it might be worth looking for a used one and changing the covers. In this way, the cost will significantly decrease by buying the brand new one. There are now many marketplaces online, especially on Facebook, so look for ones that suit your needs.
A saving method to consider when it comes to babies is also to arrange for child benefit to be paid into a separate savings account. At €140 per month per child, once they turn 18, that will have been over €30,000.
This, of course, will not suit everyone as Child Allowance can be much appreciated when it arrives each month.
The Laya survey also revealed that 77% of parents said they put too much pressure on themselves to give their children everything. It is very true. When it comes to spending on your babies, it’s worth remembering that often the best memories are those that cost nothing in the world.