Babies are great but they are expensive. As a new parent, it can be easy to get carried away with spending and new parents make a lot of mistakes. Trust me, there are a lot of things that I would have done differently with my first child. Here are some tips that I would like to give you as a new parent. Tips that can save you quite a bit of money.
1. Breast Feed As Long As Possible
Breast feeding your baby is one of the best things that you can do for them. They get a better nutritional profile and all of your immunities. It is also good for you. It helps with your recovery after giving birth and the calories expended producing milk helps you to lose that baby weight.
In addition to the health benefits, breast feeding can also save you a ton of money. Formula is extremely expensive, so breast feed as long as possible.
If breast feeding is not possible, consider pumping. Breast pumps are often provided free of charge from your health insurance company. If they are, they will either ship you one directly or reimburse you for the cost of one.
2. Don’t Open It Until You Use It
This one will go against your instinct but it will save you a lot of money. Your nesting instinct will tell you to get everything open and ready to use. Fill the shelves with all of your ready to use gear, toys and diapers.
The problem is that you might not use all of that stuff and if you open it, you can not return it.
You might not need all of the things that you bought or that have been given you. In addition, kids can grow out of diapers sooner than you think. Why open every box of diapers only to be stuck with several dozen unusable ones?
So, wait until you need it to open it and if you do not need it, simply take it back. Even if you do not get cash back, you can get store credit and buy something else that you do need.
3. Buy Generic Formula
When the time does come to go to formula, buy the generic variety. It is just as nutritional but can cost half the price. To further your savings, buy it in bulk from a warehouse club like Sam’s or Costco.
Once your baby is on to the powdered formula, you will quickly find out just how expensive it is to no longer breastfeed. You will appreciate the savings from a generic. In addition, generics are available in all the same formulations as the name brands so if your baby as a sensitive stomach, you will be covered.
4. Do Not Buy Generic Diapers
Generics and store brands can be great in most cases. In the cases of diapers, they are generally no good.
Generic diapers fit poorly, do not hold as much moisture, come off easily and just work badly in general. They will result in a lot of frustration because they will result in a lot of ruined outfits.
Ultimately, you will spend more if you use generic diapers. This is because you will have to replace ruined clothing and you will have to change them more often because they hold less moisture and do a worse job of keeping it wicked away from baby.
5. Get Gear That Grows
Spend a few dollars more and get baby gear that will grow with baby.
Get car seats that transition from rear facing to forward facing and ultimately to a booster seat. They will cost a few dollars more but will more than pay for themselves.
In addition, strollers can be found that will hold a baby seat and then transition into a toddler seat. This could allow you to use the same stroller for three years. That alone could save yu 200 dollars or more over time.
Lastly, look at a crib that will become a toddler bed. These usually require a kit to transition so make sure that you get this kit. Sometimes it is an additional cost. If you want the ultimate savings, you can get a bed that will also transition into a full size bed. That would mean that you would have a bed that could last your baby for their entire childhood. That is a huge savings of 500 dollars, at the least.
6. Save The Special Outfits
If you are hanging around the house, a simple onesie will do. No need to put your baby in a twenty dollar outfit just to have them spit up on it.
Onesies are cheap and sold by the dozen. Save the special outfits for when you go out and for the holidays.
7. Join A Mom’s Group
These are great for a number of reasons. They are great places to socialize and meet other parents. For a new parent, it is a learning tool that you can use to ask advice and soak up some of the wisdom from parents who have been there.
Another benefit is free stuff. Kids are always growing out of things and parents just want them out of the house. Be there to scoop up that used jogging stroller or box full of toys. Your baby won’t know or care that they are not new and you can save a fortune.
8. Shop For Next Season
Baby clothes get a drastic price cut when they go out of season. Shop a few seasons ahead of time and save up to 75% off the cost of new.
In the fall, you should be snapping up all of the summer clothes for the next year. Likewise, in the spring, it is time to stock up on next years winter clothing.
A little planning ahead goes a long way towards saving money on your babies clothing budget and get you more money in your pocket.
Tina’s Last Word
Having a baby is extremely expensive and every dollar that you can save is crucial. Do not feel bad for being cheap or frugal with baby expenses. Your baby cares more about being loved than being in name brand clothing.