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Baby Planners: The Hottest, Newest Way to Throw Your Money Away

Recession? What recession? Apparently, not everybody is suffering financial setbacks these days. Some expectant parents are willing to pay a so-called “baby planner” $150 an hour fee to…help plan for the baby.

“You’ve heard of wedding planners, event planners and financial planners,” the Web site of ABC News in Philadelphia says. Apparently, baby planners are “the hottest thing for expectant moms who want to be fully prepared before that bundle of joy comes home.”

You know it’s a full blown trend since there’s even an International Baby Planner Association. In the past three years, around 60 to 70 baby concierge businesses have popped up around North America. According to the International Baby Planner Association, the average hourly rates run between $50 and $150. Packages can cost up to $1,000.

What exactly does baby planning entail? Shopping for baby gear, researching product recalls and recommending baby gear. Oh yes, and how could I forget all the work that needs to be done on decorating the nursery, planning a baby shower, and registering for baby gifts? A really devoted baby planner a.k.a. baby concierge might even help motivate mom to get in shape before the new baby arrives.

Is it just me or does this seem like yet another way of outsourcing parenting? Sure, there’s a lot to do to prepare for a baby, but parents learn soon enough that buying more stuff doesn’t necessarily mean you’re better prepared to handle parenthood.

Besides, what are friends and family for anyway? When I was expecting my first child, my best friend told me exactly what I did and didn’t need to buy and my family was happy to shower me with baby gear.

I know it can be overwhelming figuring out what to buy, but don’t be fooled into thinking you need a professional help. As long as you’ve got some diapers on hand, you’ll be just fine when the baby arrives. I promise that you will never use that diaper wipe warmer.

As Motherlode’s Lisa Belkin points out, you’d be better off saving the $150/hr. baby planning fee and using it towards a post-natal massage.

Would you ever considering hiring a baby planner?

Photo: flickr/funkyshapes

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