How to Prepare Your Home for the Arrival of a Newborn

If you’re having a baby, then congratulations! It’s always exciting to add a new member to the family. But, it can also be pretty overwhelming. Babies need a lot of stuff, and there’s a lot to do in preparation for them to arrive! Your house is just one area to prepare, but it is an important one – the baby will be living there, after all.

Luckily, bringing home a newborn doesn’t mean you have to childproof your house. After all, a newborn can’t move yet! You have a few months before you need to do that, but there are some things you should plan for.

Make Your Life Easier

Once the baby gets here, you’ll be shocked at how little time you have to get anything done. Take the last few weeks before the baby comes to get the house in order. One of the best things you can do is to stuff your fridge full of frozen casseroles that you can heat up for an easy dinner. If you can afford to hire a weekly maid for a month, that will also help tremendously. If you can’t then sit down and discuss with your partner how the house is going to be a mess. It will be, and that’s ok. The house can wait, but the baby can’t. Decide ahead of time how you and your partner can arrange things to get the most done. Deciding to not fold laundry for a few weeks is great, and so is dedicating a specific code to let the other know that take-out is necessary!


Plan for Company

Any family or friends that are going to come around and meet your newborn should be prepared to help. If you’re lucky, someone will offer to come stay with you for a week or so afterwards. If not, then figure out how soon you’ll accept visitors and what you’d like them to do. Seriously, they should help out. Try making a list and sticking it on the fridge. Then when someone comes over and offers to help (with or without intention of following through) you can simply point them towards the fridge and ask them to pick a chore or two. It’ll help you get some housework done, while keeping acquaintances out of your underwear drawer.

Keep the Crib Close

Most experts now recommend keeping a newborn in the room with you overnight. That does not mean you should keep the baby in the bed with you! While many other cultures around the world do this, and it is possible to bed-share safely under specific conditions, it is not easy to do in the US. Soft, pillow-topped mattresses with pillows, blankets, and significant others in the bed all make for a very unsafe sleeping condition for the baby. However, keeping the crib or bassinet in your room does make things easier. You can hear the baby stir before they actually wake up, and you don’t have to go tramping down the hall 16 times a night – which is how bed-sharing usually starts in the first place.

Set up the Nursery

Even if you have the bed in your room, you’ll still want the basics of a nursery. It’s good for your child to have a space that’s theirs, and a place for you to be able to put all of their stuff! Figuring out what baby furniture you need is key to getting this space set up. Of course, the crib is already in your room, but you can’t fit everything in there! Having a rocking chair, changing table, and dresser is pretty much the bare bones version of everything you’ll need. Luckily, your baby has no idea what bare bones means, so if you get extra stuff, it’ll mostly be for you!


Don’t Forget the Pets

If you have pets, especially ones that have full range of the house, it’s important to help prepare them for the baby too! Dogs and cats can both get jealous of having to share your attention, so try and ease them into it. It might sound mean, but if you start showing them less attention before the baby arrives, it won’t be such a shock for them when the child gets here. You should also check out how they react to children, if you don’t already know. Get a doll, treat it a little like a baby. Take your pets to a park, or ask a friend with kids to come over to see how your cat does. It doesn’t hurt to schedule some one-on-one time with your pets either, especially if you can take them out for a walk!

Having a new baby is a really amazing journey, but it’s not an easy one. Make it a bit easier on everyone by preparing your home well. You don’t want to be caught having to do everything last minute, when you’ve suddenly realized that there is a brand new family member you could be spending time with instead!