Learn how to prepare your home for a new baby, with tips and hacks on deep cleaning and organizing every room in your house, decluttering, stocking up on household essentials, and getting your bills and meals in order. With a little preparation, you can make the first few weeks home with your newborn easier, leaving plenty of room for learning how to breastfeed and lots of baby cuddles!
Congrats, Mama! You’ve made it to the third trimester! Or, you’re super ahead of the game, and you’re reading this in the first or second trimester. Either way, you’re looking for ways to prepare for your newborn, which means night feedings and baby snuggles are in your near future.
While you’re busy learning how to prepare for a baby financially, write a birth plan, or choosing what to pack in your hospital bag, it’s important that you don’t forget to get your home ready. It’s possibly the most important, actually!
New moms often get so caught up with the logistics of their birth, that they forget to think about how their life is going to change once they bring baby home.
And to be fair, it’s hard to know what to expect. With my firstborn, I had everything set up. The laundry was done, everything was clean, and I felt completely ready to go! And even still, my home was pretty cluttered and trashed by the second day home. It turns out what I needed most was to accept help from family. As soon as my sister-in-law came over, I was able to get things back under control.
There’s my first tip, by the way – be prepared to accept a little help from family. You’ll need it, even if you don’t want it.
I’m going to try to be better about it this time around, but the fact of the matter is – you’re going to be in a haze when you first come home with your newborn.
The things you do now can set you up for a smooth transition into this new chapter of your life. Your home doesn’t need to be spotless, but deep cleaning and organizing really can make all the difference when you’re frazzled from lack of sleep and constant feedings.
And it goes beyond simply having a clean space during those first few critical weeks home with baby. Think about all of the things you normally do to keep your home life in order. Now imagine you’re basically going to be out of commission for about a month. What needs to be taken care of during that time?
That’s where your mind should be when you’re preparing for a baby. Don’t stress about the things you have no control over, and instead focus on what you’re able to get ready ahead of time. Now, let’s get into the things you need to prepare before delivery.
If you’re still looking for the final must-have items for your newborn, check out my list of things you need for a new baby.
When To Start Preparing For Baby’s Arrival
It’s 100% up to you! With this pregnancy I waited until around 34 weeks, when my nesting urges really started to kick in. If you’re at risk of going into pre-term labor, or you want to be on top of things, you can totally start earlier.
Once you’re truly nesting, it’s practically effortless. If you’re going through a period of extreme exhaustion and you’re just not feeling it, it’s okay to wait. That being said, some women never experience nesting, and you might not want to wait too long, or nothing will ever get done.
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Ways To Prepare Your Home For A New Baby
Deep Clean Everything
The specifics of how to clean your house for a new baby will vary depending on how tidy your house usually is. For the sake of helping you focus, let’s pretend your house is kept fairly clean. You know, decent. Not perfect, but not trashed either.
If you have some regular cleaning to do, you can add it to the blank spaces of your printable checklist at the bottom of this article.
If you have the energy, cleaning your house before baby should go beyond the typical cleaning routine you practice. I’m talking – break out the homemade natural cleaner and go to town on every nook and cranny of your home. It may be a long time before those areas get any attention again, and it’ll make you feel good knowing you’re bringing your baby home to a safe, clean, dust-free space!
Here are some things you might consider deep cleaning:
- Sweeping and mopping or vacuuming under furniture
- Scrubbing baseboards
- Dusting and wiping down ceiling fans
- Replacing light bulbs
- Cleaning out drawers and bins (crumbs, trash, etc.)
- Wiping down doorknobs, doors, light switches and walls
- Washing throw pillow covers, rugs, and other items that don’t make it in the usual laundry rotation every week
- Cleaning windows, windowsills, and curtains
- Wiping down furniture (shelves, couches, etc.)
- Scrubbing appliances (microwave, toaster, coffee pot, etc.)
- Cleaning mirrors
- Dusting all shelves, books, and knick-knacks
I like to start from one side of the house and work my way through. Because I have a toddler during this pregnancy for the first time ever, it’s taking me quite a long time to work through everything.
Don’t forget to tidy up the outside of your home! I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty good about keeping things tidy, and we still usually have toddler toys in our yard.
Wash Baby’s Clothes
Wash all of your baby’s clothes in whatever detergent you plan on using. Newborn skin is super sensitive, so it’s best to try to be consistent with which products you’re going to use on them the first few months. There’s always a chance they’ll be allergic to the brand you choose, but there’s no way to prepare for that.
After washing, hang or fold all of their clothes. I love these closet dividers for those of you that plan on hanging your baby’s clothes.
It might take a while in between crying fits over how tiny and cute their little socks are, but it’s one of the best parts of nesting.
Create A Nursing Station
If you’re planning on breastfeeding, you should consider creating a nursing station, or a breastfeeding basket! Seriously, it makes all the difference! Having all of your items in one spot while you’re nursing or pumping around the clock for the first few weeks is a must.
Creating a Breastfeeding Basket:
- A basket (preferably one with different compartments, like this one)
- Nursing Pads
- Nipple Balm
- Haakaa (These are amazing! They catch all of the milk that comes out of the breast your baby is not nursing from, that would otherwise be wasted. The suction makes them hands-free, and super convenient.)
- Reusable Water Bottle (I love this one. Seriously, how cute is that?)
- Lactation Support Drops (always be aware that different people respond differently to fenugreek and blessed thistle.)
- A Book or Magazine
- Burp Cloths
- Soothie Gel Pads
- Breast Therapy Packs (you’ll have to heat or freeze them, but you should still keep them close)
Things To Have at Your Nursing Station:
- Nursing Pillow
- Throw Blanket
- Nursing Tea (Mother’s Milk is great, and so is Pink Stork)
- Lactation Snacks, like this delicious Granola
For Pumping Mamas:
- Breast Milk Bags
- Extra Pump Parts (these are for the Medela)
- Manual Pump (I love the Lansinoh manual pump, and the Medela)
- Bottles & Lids
- Hands-Free Bra
Other things to consider:
Organize Your House
Organizing your house before baby arrives is probably the most time-consuming task. At least, it is for me. You’ll have to check yourself or you’ll end up spending hundreds of dollars on storage containers.
To stay on track, just remind yourself that the goal is to make your life easier while you’re caring for a newborn. You don’t have to go full-on homemaker queen.
Here are some things you might consider organizing before baby comes:
- Junk drawers
- On top of the fridge
- Toys (if you have older kids)
- Purse (admit it, there’s goldfish crumbs and gum wrappers at the bottom of your purse)
Stock Up on Household Essentials
Think about everything you use in about a month’s time, and stock up! You don’t want to worry about running to the grocery store with a newborn for toilet paper. You don’t have to live in a bubble, but if you’re going to go out, it might as well be for something fun, instead of a boring chore.
Here are some household items you might consider stocking up on before your baby is born:
- Toilet Paper
- Light bulbs
- Body Wash
- Face wash
- Cleaning Spray
- Dish Soap
- Hand Soap
- Dishwasher Tabs
- Toilet Cleaner
- Laundry Detergent
- Fabric Softener
- Mop Solution
- Febreeze/Air Freshener
- Mouth wash
- Trash bags
- Pet Food
- Paper Towels
- Ziploc Bags
Declutter To Make Room For Baby Stuff
Decluttering and organizing go hand-in-hand! While you’re cleaning your home from top to bottom, let go of items that don’t get used. You’ll need the room for all the new baby gear! I went on a toy purge while cleaning my son’s play room. You might also consider clearing out your closets, dry food, old shampoo bottles, and anything else that you don’t need.
Make Pre-Baby Freezer Meals
While many new moms want to jump right back into the swing of things when they go home with their newborn, it’s best to take some time to recover. You may feel like you’re physically able to stand up and make dinner, you won’t feel this way every day. Plus, you have no way of knowing what your baby’s personality is going to be like until they’re here.
Maybe they’ll scream every time you put them down, and baby-wearing will hurt your back. Maybe you’ll be too exhausted to even think about cooking most nights. You’ll want to be ready for those situations!
That’s where pre-baby freezer meals come into play. The idea is simple: Prep some meals ahead of time and freeze them. Once your baby is born and you need to make dinner, you simply dump the contents of the freezer bag into a crockpot or pan and let it cook. Done!
Pre-baby freezer meals have the potential to save your sanity completely in the first few weeks home, especially if you don’t have any friends or family available to cook for you all the time. Hell, even if your husband is available to make dinner most nights, both of you will benefit from having easy meals ready to go.
Set Bills up For Auto Draft
Are there bills that you know you could set to automatically come out of your account, you’ve just never done it? Now’s the time! No matter how organized you are, things are crazy for several weeks after bringing a newborn home. You may feel confident that you’ll remember, but you should still set your bills to auto draft, just in case.
And for the bills you’re unable to set up with auto pay, try setting a few reminders. My Echo Show has been a lifesaver throughout my pregnancy, and I know it’ll serve me well postpartum. You can set up reminders, tell Alexa to add items to your grocery list, ask her questions, and so much more! For the few bills I’m unable to set up, she’ll be reminding me the day before and the day the bill is due.
Build Big Baby Items & Set up The Nursery
I’m sure I don’t need to remind you to set things up for the baby, but it’s worth adding. Your baby probably won’t use their jumparoo or even their crib just yet, but setting it up now will save you time later. Once they’re here, you’ll be much busier than you are now!
Baby-Proof Your House
It’s still early, and you don’t have to baby-proof everything right now. It will be a few months until your baby is mobile enough to start getting into things. But most moms will tell you – it flies by! You might as well knock it out now while you’re on a cleaning spree. It’ll save you a headache later.
Getting The House Ready For Baby Checklist
Preparing for baby’s arrival – the cleaning and decluttering checklist! Grab your free printable copy below:
How have you been preparing your home for baby? Was there anything I missed? Let us know in the comments!
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