: Having a baby? The first year can easily set you back nearly $16,000. Add that to recession fears, rising prices and job insecurity.


Having a baby? Here’s something for you to consider: A baby’s first year could cost parents up to $16,000, according to a new study.

The study by BabyCenter, which calculated costs based on a variety of items needed for a baby, from childcare and formula to diapers and bibs and clothing, found that a baby’s first year could cost parents on average $15,775.

The biggest expense during a baby’s first year is childcare, which roughly costs about $6,500. BabyCenter also estimated the cost of childcare specifically based on a survey of 307 parents who use paid childcare. 

“About a quarter of parents surveyed said that they’re holding on to debt, or postponing or even abandoning plans to pay off debt because of baby-related expenses.”

Moms who decide to stay at home to take care of their little one take a big financial hit: Unpaid leave costs moms $6,643 in income, on average.

Inflation only added to parents’ worries over costs: 54% said that they were worried about managing daily expenses due to inflation, and over half of parents also worried about the cost of raising a child. 

Recession fears and concerns about financial stability also worried 52% of parents.

And — echoing the CDC data on U.S. births — these fears led 25% of parents surveyed to say they’re having fewer children. Another 25% said they’ve decided to pause or delay adding children to their family for the reasons above.

Got thoughts on the cost of parenting? Write to MarketWatch reporter Aarthi Swaminathan at

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