Everything You Need to Know to Prepare Your Home for a New Baby
Looking forward to bringing home your new baby? For some top tips on preparing your home for your little one, you came to the right place...
Bringing home a new baby is one of the most joyous moments in life, but it can also be one of the most daunting. Once your bundle of joy arrives home, there will be so much to think about and learn, that you’ll likely not have time to worry!
So, when should you start preparing for your new baby’s arrival? The sooner you can, the less stressful it will be. From cleaning and baby-proofing your home, to making sure you have all the essentials you need for feeding, clothing and changing, there’s a lot to think about.
So, whether you’ve organised your next life step through surrogacy solicitors, or have given birth yourself, it’s preparation time! For some top tips and tricks for getting your home ready for your newborn baby boy or girl, read on…
Getting the House Ready for Baby
Once the baby arrives, there’ll be lots to do, so it’s important to get organised to help ease the transition. Many mums-to-be will naturally start ‘nesting’ before the birth, so here’s a checklist of some of the main jobs you might want to tackle:
- De-clutter your life: Now is the time to go through your cupboards and wardrobes to clear up space for your new arrival. Donate old clothes, gift unnecessary gadgets to friends, throw out old paperwork and rid the bathroom and kitchen of out of date products. This will make room for all the baby essentials and ensure you aren’t tripping over things!
- Get organised: Buy some simple but smart storage solutions and make sure they’re on every level of the house. Having boxes to deposit baby toys or having a laundry basket handy to throw those dirty bibs in will make your life easier in the long run.
- Deep clean: Now is the time to tackle some of those harder cleaning jobs in the house. Think about getting your carpets cleaned, steaming your upholstery and deep cleaning the kitchen and bathroom in preparation. Try not to use harsh chemicals, and delegate tasks to ensure you’re not lifting or stretching during pregnancy.
- Do laundry ahead of time: Try and get on top of your laundry pile before the baby arrives. Make sure, after it’s clean and dry (and ironed if necessary), it’s put away so that your house is free from clutter.
- Prepare for quick clean-ups: Stock up on things like stain remover, wipes and plenty of kitchen towel so that you can clean up messes quickly as you go. If you think you might need to hire someone to help with the extra cleaning, consider doing this now.
Ensure Your Home is Safe for Your New Baby
You might not be concerned about your baby crawling yet, but it won’t be long before they’re getting up to mischief! Baby-proofing your home now frees up your time later when your baby is more mobile.
One of the easiest and cheapest things you can start with is rounding off any sharp corners on furniture and blocking plug sockets. You can either do this by filing them down but, if you don’t want permanent damage to your furniture, fixtures can be purchased. It’s a good idea to make a checklist of all the rooms in the house and the potential safety hazards so you know they’re all covered.
Don’t forget to check your cupboards for any hazardous chemicals and keep them out of arm’s reach, or put a child safety lock on the door. What’s more, if you haven’t already, install some smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and ensure they’re tested regularly.
There are some really fantastic baby-proofing checklists out there on the internet. Do your research, and ensure you have everything sorted; The Bump has one of the best checklists for expecting parents. Or, just use your initiative and, if it looks dangerous or precarious, make a change!
Preparing the Nursery
Whether you’re preparing for a baby girl or baby boy, decorating the nursery is one of the most exciting tasks for parents-to-be. So, what sort of essentials and interior design ideas should you put in place?
Proximity of Rooms
One of the first things to consider is how close the nursery is to your room. Although it’s recommended that your new baby sleeps with you for the first six months, after that, having close proximity to the nursery will make those middle of the night wakeups a little easier.
Then, it’s on to the decoration! It’s a good idea to start decorating a couple of months before your baby arrives, so that you aren’t having to move furniture around, and the paint smell can subside. Choose calming, neutral colours that help promote good sleep, and ensure the curtains remove as much light as possible.
The Baby Room Checklist
When it comes to getting your baby’s room prepared, there are some essentials for your nursery which are both practical, and great for decoration. These nursery must-haves include:
- Baby bedding
- Storage for bedding and clothes
- Changing table
- Chair for feeding and nursing your baby
- Baby monitor
Preparing for Visitors
It’s natural that your loved ones will want to visit you as soon as possible after the baby arrives, wanting to wow you with their unique new baby gifts. But preparing for visitors is probably the last thing you’ll want to do when you’re so busy. So, getting some things sorted in advance can make it a little easier.
If you’re planning on having people to stay, then prepare your guest room in advance. Make sure it’s been cleaned, has fresh bedding, and is stocked with fresh towels and perhaps some ear plugs!
When people come to visit, be firm and set some ground rules. A ‘no shoes in the house policy’ is a good one, to keep your house clean and germ free. Telling people the rules before they come in ensures no-one oversteps the mark.
Preparing for the Hospital and Travelling Home
Preparing your hospital bag and the arrangements for travelling there will most likely make it all feel more real. It’s exciting, and an event you’ll want to cherish forever. But what should you bring with you to the hospital? Here’s a checklist of some things for your hospital bag:
- Your hospital notes and birth plan
- Pyjamas/night dress, slippers and dressing gown
- Spare sets of comfortable clothes to change into
- Sanitary or maternity pads
- Spare sets of underwear
- A wash bag with your toothbrush, hairbrush, deodorant etc.
- Things to pass the time, e.g. book, magazine, music etc.
- Newborn baby clothes
- Car seat
When you’re buying a car seat in advance, make sure you seek the advice of a professional. They can give you tips on the safest models, and also show you how to fit it into the car so you can practice before the big day.
Deciding who will be taking you to hospital is also a really important step. Then, ensure that their car has plenty of fuel and is clean and tidy, ready for the arrival.
Then, it’s all down to the little things, that you likely won’t remember when the panic sets in on baby day. So, make sure you bring things like phone chargers so you can update your loved ones, and take photos of your new baby.
Looking After Yourself
It’s easy when you’re going through the things to do to prepare for your baby to forget about yourself and your partner. So, to make things easier for yourself in those first few weeks, here are some ideas for things to prepare:
You’ll really thank yourself by getting everything prepared for those first few weeks to make your life easier in advance. Start by batch-cooking some tasty and nutritious meals and storing them in the freezer. This will help make sure you’re keeping healthy, and allow you to focus on your new baby.
What’s more, it might help to talk to your partner about dividing up household chores, and who will be getting up for feeds during the night. By making sure this is all sorted beforehand, it’ll be one extra thing to tick off of your list.
Some mums find it a good idea to organise their wardrobes with clothes that are soft and comfortable, particularly for right after the birth. Separating out your wardrobe, and packing away things you won’t need for a few months will make dressing in the morning a breeze.
Communicate with Your Family
Ensuring your family is all on board and ready is always important too. So, make sure to discuss your birth plan and any arrangements you have in place for when you’re in hospital and after you return home.
What’s more, if you have older children, also have a discussion with them about what will happen once your new baby arrives at home. Organising activities that give your child some responsibility may also be a good way to ensure that they feel involved and don’t get bored.
You’re Ready for Your New Baby!
Preparing your home and life for a new baby may seem like a daunting task, but I hope that these tips have given you some peace of mind. The key thing to remember is to try and relax and be kind to yourself.
You might not get round to everything on the list but that’s ok. There’s plenty more information on preparing your home for your new baby where that came from! For this, the internet is your best friend, so don’t be afraid to ask for support.
So, how are you preparing for the arrival of your new baby? Do you have some top tips or parenting hacks that we haven’t listed here? Share them in the comments below!