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How much does it actually cost to have a baby?

If you’re expecting a little bundle of joy in your life you might be asking, how much does it cost to have a baby? And how much will it cost over the next 18ish years? Let’s break it down.

How much money do you need before having a baby?

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer here as it can vary dramatically. Some of the main costs you should be thinking about are for things like doctors, hospitals, parenting and birthing classes – not to mention baby equipment, nappies and if you’re adopting, application fees. They’re all important and the bills can quickly stack up. On top of this, you’ll need to be mindful of the extra cost of having a baby without Medicare or private health insurance.

Hospital fees are one of the bigger expenses you’ll probably have to consider. Having a baby in a private hospital can cost anywhere from $2,500 to $20,000. Whereas the public health system is often a lot cheaper, with an approx. cost anywhere from $0 to $1,500. So, when you’re wondering how much to save for a baby, chat with your local hospital, Medicare and/or health insurer to get some ballpark figures.


Fin Fact: Budgeting for a baby might be easier with our in-app tool
Free2Spend, which could help you smash your savings goals.

How much does a baby cost in the first year?

Now that your bundle of joy is in your arms, let’s talk business. In the first year, the cost of having a baby in Australia could be around $10,000. Sounds like a lot, right? But don’t forget, you’ll likely have to buy a cot, pram, car seat, clothes, nappies, formula and toys. You might also have to upgrade to a bigger home, car and health insurance policy. Boy, oh boy (... or girl) it adds up! If you’re wanting to have a baby on a budget, second-hand clothes, hand-me-downs and borrowing from friends and family should help lower your expenses.


Fin Fact: Opening multiple
UBank USave savings accounts and calling one Baby Budget could help you manage your money. And as long as you meet the criteria each month, you’ll earn bonus interest on all your accounts in the following month.*


On the bright side, having a baby in Australia comes with a lot of benefits. New parents could access up to 18 weeks of paid parental leave offered by the government. Bear in mind, additional time off work will need to be budgeted for during paternity or maternity leave.

The costs to come

Once your kids pass the terrible twos, you might find yourself having to cough up a bit more cash. This could mean spending more on food, clothing, toys and entertainment. Plus, childcare is one of the biggest costs for parents, averaging out at $110 a day. So, if you decide to send your kid to childcare one day a week, you’ll need to budget for around $5,000 a year.

When they’re around four or five, they’re off to school! The average cost of sending a kid to public school over 13 years could be around $68,727. The amount is even higher if you enrol your kid at an independent school, which could cost up to $298,689. Plus, if they pick up just one after school activity, like piano lessons, you might have to foot the bill of around $1,859 every year.

Of course, there are many ways you can raise a child (and not every kid will want to learn piano). But you’ll also have to consider the cost of looking after yourself and possibly your partner. Below you’ll find the minimum ‘healthy living’ costs for a couple with one child, over a period of 18 years.
 

Category

Cost

Food

$146,221.92

Clothing and footwear

$22,201.92

Household goods and services

$105,505.92

Transport

$135,457.92

Health

$18,261.36

Personal care

$29,044.08

Recreation

$58,088.16

Education

$25,674.48

Housing (rent)

$367,380

Total cost over 18 years (one couple, one child)

$907,835.76


Source: Australian Institute of Family Studies


Luckily, you’ll have years to save for that. But it’s also a good idea to consider potential costs and start planning now. Setting up a baby budget or using a baby planner will help get you in the habit of budgeting for the future. So, by the time they’re ready for school (and all the fun activities that come with it!) you’ll be a total pro.


*To be eligible for the bonus rate, you must make deposits of $200 or more into your linked USave and/or USpend account in a month and maintain a balance less than $250,000 in that month across all your savings and USpend accounts including joint accounts. The bonus interest rate is received the following month. No interest is payable on your linked USpend account. Maximum balance is $5 million per customer. No minimum balance applies.

You should consider the relevant Terms and Conditions that apply to these products, available at ubank.com.au


The information contained in this article is of a general nature only. It doesn’t take account of any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, you should consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances and seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice.