The Hidden Costs Of Having A Baby

Feb 25, 2022 Family & Finances

Having a baby is an exciting part of life! Read our blog to help better prepare for unexpected expenses you might not have thought about.

A couple sitting on a couch and smiling, the woman is pregnant and the man has his hand on her stomach.

Anticipating a child’s arrival is such an exciting time. Baby showers, finding the perfect crib, preparing a nursery, and picking out cute onesies are just a few of the fun things to look forward to, but with all of that “fun” comes extra expenses too. There are the obvious costs like diapers, food, and clothing, but are there other costs that you may or may not know about? Here’s a list of hidden costs that can help you budget your dollars and prepare for the arrival of your new bundle of joy.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, middle-income families spend an average $12,980 a year on each child and $233,610 in a lifetime – not including college. If you’re considering having a baby, be aware of all of the expenditures that could impact your family budget.

Having A Baby

Use our free resources, worksheets, and tips to prepare for welcoming your newest family member.

Prenatal Care

The cost of having a baby includes more than just the actual childbirth. These costs also include regular check-ups, tests, and prenatal care associated with pregnancy. According to WebMD, the average cost for prenatal care is about $2,000.

Both pregnancy and birth require a lot of medical attention. The pregnancy itself is filled with costs that accompany numerous doctor’s visits, tests, and procedures you might have. You’ll want to make sure you have enough financial cushion to account for these extra expenses.

Labor And Delivery

The average price of having a baby, through standard delivery, is between $5,000 – $11,000 in most states, according to data collected by Fair Health. This range includes total duration of care, obstetrician’s fee, anesthesiologist’s fee, and the hospital care fee. Additionally, the average costs for a Cesarean or C-section birth range from $7,500 – $14,500.

A birth not going as planned, such as when and where your labor begins, whether the baby has trouble making their big entrance, and what kind of care you and the baby may need after the birth, will increase the charges for childbirth.


According to a recent NerdWallet study, half of expecting parents thought diapers would be the biggest expense of having a baby, not childcare. According to the study, full-time childcare ranges from $8,000 for daycare to $27,000 or more for a nanny in the first year.


Babies need to be taken to the doctor often; weekly at first, then monthly, plus additional visits when they’re sick. Your healthcare plan may not charge copays for the well-baby visits, but keep in mind that these may not be your only doctor visits. Ear infections may take two or more visits and need a prescription. There are also non-prescription supplies that may be needed – teething gel, humidifier, creams for rashes, thermometers, and so on. Take a look at your plan to see if it will cover more frequent visits and other expenses.

Higher Utility Bills

With a new baby at home, you’ll be home more often running air conditioning, heating, lights, laundry, and other home appliances more than before.

Bigger Home

When adding a baby to the family, you might decide it’s time to upgrade to a bigger home to make room for your growing family. Having more room is nice, but think about how a higher mortgage payment or monthly rent might impact your budget and stretch it too thin.

Loss Of Income

During maternity leave, you may only be paid a portion of your salary, depending upon your company’s benefit structure. If you decide to take additional time off, it might be taken as unpaid or part-time. Some parents may have to take unpaid days off for some of the well-baby doctor visits or when the baby is sick.

Life Insurance

Before having kids you might not think much about your life insurance plan. But once the baby arrives, you’ll begin asking yourself what would happen if one parent died suddenly. Life insurance costs vary widely depending on your overall health, lifestyle, and the specifics of your plan.

Now that you’re aware of these potential hidden costs, you can better prepare for extra expenses that may pop up. Enjoy the journey with less stress, and focus on more important things like… “Should the nursery have a mural of zoo animals, dinosaurs, or superheroes?”

Copyright BALANCE.

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