How Much Does it Cost to Use Cloth Diapers Exclusively?
When shopping or registering for baby items, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. After endless online shopping and in-person browsing, the biggest question most parents-to-be have is, “What do I REALLY need?” While there are lots of nice-to-haves, the reality is that there are relatively few must-haves. Newborn babies who are breastfed typically only need a safe place to sleep, a car seat, clothes to wear, diapers and wipes, and the basic care items that can be found in a standard baby care kit.
If you’re looking to save some serious cash, most of these items can be found at discount stores or second-hand. And, once you have them, you don’t have to worry about the expense again. Diapers, though, will be a reoccurring expense. So thrifty parents might want to know: Are cloth diapers more expensive than disposable diapers?
If a parent chooses disposable diapers they can expect to spend about $750 per year or $62.50 per month on diapers. With a child who potty trains on a typical timeline that adds up to over $1500 from birth through the end of the diaper phase.
When considering cloth diapering parents have two options: a diaper service that launders and delivers cloth diapers or the purchase and care of a set of cloth diapers.
Diaper services are often hailed as the most convenient way to cloth diaper. Typically a diaper service will drop off clean diapers weekly and pick up and launder the ones a baby used in the last week. Throughout the week parents usually just need to rinse diapers and place them in a specialty bag. The cost of a diaper services ranges from city to city but on average costs about $1200 per year or, $100 per month. This adds up to about $2400 from birth through the end of the diaper phase.
The purchase and care of cloth diapers takes more work than a diaper service, but it also costs considerably less. A full set of new cloth diapers costs as low as $300 for basic diapers to over $1000 for organic cotton diapers. Cloth diapering parents will also need to factor in the cost of using the washing machine and detergent which can be about $150 per year. Over the course of a baby’s diaper-wearing years, cloth diapers can cost between $600 and $1300 diapers. What’s not factored into this cost though is the time labor of rinsing, washing, and folding diapers for 2+ years.
As you think about diapering, and whether you’ll use cloth or disposable, the cost can be a major factor. Now you know just how much each option costs!