With a baby on the way, you might feel overwhelmed by all the preparation needed to make your home safe and functional before the new family member arrives. You’re not alone. According to a new survey by Orlando Health, 40 percent of new mothers feel depressed, anxious, and overwhelmed following their baby’s delivery.
Although it takes some work, preparing your home for a new baby ahead of time can actually help put your mind at ease. You’ll be able to focus solely on taking care of your baby instead of trying to find the right items that have gotten lost in cabinets, closets or under the bed. We’re here to help make baby-proofing your home easier and give you peace of mind.
Read on for our top seven tips on preparing a space and bringing baby home!
Create Baby Stations
One of the most helpful things you can do to prepare your home for a new baby is to create baby stations throughout your home. Here are some of our recommendations:
1. Changing Station
A dedicated area helps when trying to change a crying, messy baby! Consider including all of these items in drawers or baskets:
- Unwrapped diapers (ready to grab and use)
- Diaper creams
- Clean clothes
- Spit up cloths
- Trash can/diaper pail
- Toys to keep your baby occupied
Babies are usually wriggling and active when it’s time to change them. You’ll have your hands full keeping them still, so this is why we recommend including as many items as you think you’ll need. You can also keep a pre-packed diaper bag in this area for when you’re ready to hit the road.
2. Feeding Station
The kitchen is where you might prepare formula for your baby, but of course you’ll also need a dedicated station for feeding, formula or not. Start with a comfortable chair in the nursery so that you can have privacy if there are guests in your home. Here are more items you’ll want to include:
- Spit-up cloths
- Baby books if your baby is ready to fall asleep
- Nightlight or soft task light
- Bottles of water for mom
- Snacks for mom
- A small tv or a stand for an iPhone/tablet
Feeding your baby takes some time, so it’s a nice opportunity to try and relax, listen to a podcast or catch up on your favorite show.
3. Nighttime Station
Routines can help prepare your baby for sleep, especially if they’re fussy. By creating a nighttime station, you won’t have to search throughout your house to find items that will comfort your baby. Try including:
- Bedtime baby books
- Soft night lamp or nursery lamp
- Calming music
- Spit-up cloth
- Baby monitor
We recommend setting your baby monitor in a dedicated space that gives a good view of your baby’s crib, like a nearby shelf or a dresser. To get the positioning just right, you might also consider installing a small shelf strictly for the baby monitor.
Baby-Proof Your Home
Once you have some dedicated stations, your next step should be baby-proofing your home. We recommend baby-proofing sooner rather than later, as it’s hard to find the time once you have a crying and needy infant to manage! Here are a few steps to get started:
4. Secure Furniture
Make sure that you install corner protectors on sharp furniture corners so that your child doesn’t injure themself as they grow and move around. You’ll also want to secure furniture to the wall so that it isn’t prone to tipping and falling.
5. Electrical Equipment
Cover up unused electric outlets with covers. You’ll also want to do some basic cord management by bundling cords with zip ties and mounting them to the wall instead of in a tangle on the floor to prevent catches and snags.
6. Sleep Safety
When it comes to baby safety, making sure their sleeping area is safe is one of the most important tasks you can do. Make sure that the crib is free of stuffed animals, pillows, and blankets that your baby may suffocate on since they’re not able to control their bodies. You’ll also want the crib in your room until they’re one year old.
7. Choking Hazards
Check your home for any small, loose items that may become choking hazards if your baby picks them up and puts them in their mouth. This can include items like pen caps, loose change, Legos, glass nick nacks, and a whole lot more.
Hanging pull-cords for blinds can also pose hazards for your baby to play with. They can easily wrap around small necks or get caught on hands and wrists. Wrap them up, or invest in some cordless blinds.
You’ll also want to do some research into houseplants. If they’re within reach of your baby or small child, they can easily be choking hazards. Some plants are also toxic for humans and animals, so make sure you’re only purchasing safe plants.
If you find that some plants you already own are toxic, you can donate them to someone you know or place them in spots where your child will never reach.
Bringing Baby Home: One Step at a Time
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by everything you need to do before your baby arrives, from home improvement projects to stocking up on all the essentials. However, if you keep a list of things to do and make progress one step at a time, you’ll be able to get things done without stressing more than you already might be!
On the hunt for a new home that’s perfect for your growing family? Connect with us today to begin your home search!