SPINOFF: How much $$$ do you need before planning a baby?

posted 1 year ago in Babies
Post # 31
7904 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

azf0019 :  I think a lot of it depends on your current debt and lifestyle choices. My husband and I make a combined $180k (ish) a year in the Boston area and it’s comfortable with one baby and a dog. I recently had an unexpected pregnancy (but miscarried) and we freaked out a lot over the cost and it didn’t look like we could  swing it without making some deep cuts. We own a fixer-upper home in a good school district, have one 6-year old paid off car, and don’t have any student loans or consumer debt. If we had multiple cars/car payments or other debt it would be tight with the cost of daycare ($1,800/month for one infant). We can pay our bills, save for retirement and college, and have a few extras in life, but we aren’t living the high life by any means. I wouldn’t want to have a baby in this area with less. 


Post # 32
924 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Right now our household income is about $90-100k, and I’d say we’re reasonably comfortable. We’re paying off some unexpected debt from the wedding and some medical bills, so fortunately things are tighter now than they will be when we do have kids. 

Our plan is for Dh to be a stay-at-home dad, so my goal is to get my income up to the $90-100k range on my own so we won’t miss Dh’s income. I’m not too far off thankfully because Dh pulls in about $20k/year. I’m hoping that some freelance work and/or raises will help me reach that salary range within the next couple of years.

Savings-wise, I have no idea what I’d be comfortable with—probably just as much as humanly possible! 

Post # 33
2569 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

We didn’t necessarily have a salary in mind, mainly because “on paper” our salary is already significant. However, since we pay so much in taxes, insurance, medical savings, and retirement (we put away about a quarter of our income into retirement)… our actual take-home is MUCH less than our gross income. 

So instead of a particular salary, our goals were to 1) be totally debt free and 2) have six months of living expenses saved as an emergency fund. For my Dave Ramsey followers, we wanted to be done with Baby Step 3 before trying for an actual baby. We met that goal in March and then got pregnant in April. 

However, in addition to those goals, I also wanted to save around $1,500 to pay for baby-gear (nursery furniture, stroller, car seats, clothes, etc). 

I know lots of people want a house and are concerned about a good school district before they get pregnant, but for us, even if we wanted to we couldn’t buy a house right now. My husband’s job is likely going to move us every couple of years for as long as he is working for this company, so we aren’t worried about buying a house until we know we’re going to actually settle down at a location for 5+ years.

Post # 34
550 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2015 - Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel

To maintain our lifestyle(ish) I would say my husband and I together needed to earn $120,000+. That allows us to pay for daycare, an annual vacation and some baby classes/clothes when they come up but by no means do we live a really extravagant life (and in fact money is tight more often than I would like). 

We are located in Canada so we don’t need to worry about healthcare or insurance so keep this in mind too with my opinion!

Post # 35
638 posts
Busy bee

I dont have an exact amount but I do want to put this out there. I grew up on a pretty low income, so did a lot of my friends. I’m talking two working parents making min. Wage. But I always had enough. I didn’t have a ton of toys but I did have a computer, an mp3 a digital camera when all those things were new technology, oh and internet too. And we still went back to my parents home country every few years and instate vacations every few years. I had tutoring or summer programs up until I was 16. Weekly tutoring and chinese school until I was in high school at which point I kept ditching class. But I never had designer anything. We shopped at Ross and sales and only bought stuff we need. Even tho I didn’t grow up in a household with a lot of money, I had a lot of the advantages that more affluent household gave their kids. So I firmly believe in you can have kids even if you dont have a lot of money. Just be resourceful. Like my parents sticking me in after school programs and making me go to kids church groups(they are not religious at all) so they dont have to get a babysitter.

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