I have seen the stats that claim that raising a child from birth through college can run you an easy $300,000. But I had no idea until recently that $100,000 of that could be spent their first year! My eight month old granddaughter has opened my eyes to the expenses incurred during a child's first year. It's sobering folks! Many of you already know that. I was clueless. My son came to me after babyhood, so I didn't have a handle costs in his first few years.
For the sake of expediency, we'll forgo the costs here of the birth, hospital, and other medical expenses. Just in terms of day to day costs, the amounts are eye-openers. My granddaughter had a pre-birth baby shower in which 150 people attended. From what was received there I thought she'd be well-equipped at least until she started school! Not really.
Aside from the major expenses like crib, car carrier/car seat, stroller, etc., there are numerous items that are available that help make Mom and baby's first few months easier and more comfortable. I sprang for the baby changing table (a furniture piece with drawers), an easy-chair rocker and enough outfits to get her on the baby version of Project Runway. Her other grandparents and various Aunts and Uncles gave little swings, carriages, pillows for feeding, etc. etc. There are baby accessories out there that I never knew existed and none are cheap!
I am the diaper guy. I have been buying diapers (about 200 at a time) and I'm here to tell you, I hope my granddaughter gets potty trained before I have to mortgage my house! These are disposable diapers, of course. My mother never had those. They hadn't been invented in the Dark Ages! I'm sure cloth diapers are better....if you have a diaper service. Otherwise most people opt for the Huggies and other varieties. No matter the brand. They are not cheap either.
All in all, I would say a person can easily spend $5,000-$10,000 on a baby the first year. That makes me wonder WHY people want multiple births! The expense alone would be staggering. Nonetheless; I can see why few people only settle for one child. Once you invest in all the baby things for the first child, you kind of hate to see that huge investment go into retirement. It only makes sense to get more use out of that bouncy swing or changing table.
All I can offer to people who do not have children yet is to tell you that if you plan to have a child, save up lots of money first. No matter how much you save, it won't be enough!