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A new baby can bring so much joy into the lives of a family. However, he or she can also bring so much financial strive. Budgeting for a baby is all about looking at your income and, essentially, cutting out your spending habits for a certain period of time. While many companies now offer paid parental leave for Mom or Dad to stay home with the baby for a certain period of time, you will still need to save up and budget your incomes for all the items that the baby needs. Take the time to budget for a baby before your little ones arrival.

Having a new baby can get expensive. Babies need a lot of things. Buying this all brand new can cost several thousands of dollars and this is before you even have the baby!

Of course, there are ways to cut down on the costs of these items by buying second hand and looking for sales and deals. You can also host a baby shower and get some of these items as gifts as well as borrow from friends and relatives that have hand me downs to offer. Take as much as you can - you will need it and be grateful down the road, especially when you have to start buying formula, baby food and diapers on a weekly basis!

Baby Budget Checklist

It is a good idea to get a newborn checklist from the internet and make a list of what items you need and where you can get them. You might be able to pick up the bigger items, like a cot and change table, from a garage sale. It is a good idea to buy the car seat new as well as some other items as you want to be sure it has never been in an accident before. You can expect to spend around $2000 to $5000 on new stuff for your baby, depending on how budget savvy you are when it comes to shopping.

In addition to buying items for the baby, which includes things like a crib, a crib mattress, a mobile, change table, laundry basket, bassinet, diaper bag, diaper genie, breast pump and bottles, baby monitor, stroller, portable cot, high chair, clothing, blankets, linen, baby sling or carrier and a car seat (to name a few of the many items), you also need to think about new things for yourself. Mommies to be will need extra items, especially in the clothes department such as new ugly comfortable underwear, maternity bras and maternity pants and t-shirts, especially to wear to work. You will also need things like breast pads, creams and lotions and plenty of pads for after the birth. All of these items will add up as well. And don't forget the pregnancy vitamins which can set you back hundreds of dollars during your pregnancy and breastfeeding time as well.

Finally, when budgeting for a baby you will need to think about losing one income. If both of you are working right now, one of you will most likely take time off from work to stay home with the infant, ideally for one year but often for a period much shorter than this. Try to work out to stay home for at least four months when the infant needs you the most and then, if possible, budget part time work. Or, if you can, aim to stay home as much as possible during this critical time when bonding, breastfeeding and being together is so important for both new parents and for the new baby.

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