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10 Money-Saving Tips for New Parents
Congratulations! You and your partner are in for a lot of fun. My husband and I were ecstatic when we found out we were pregnant with our first son, but that’s when reality hit. An extra person at home meant more expenses in every aspect and a complete change in our normal routine. Parenting often involves sacrifices, but that doesn’t mean our bank accounts have to be completely empty because of it. There are many ways to save money when welcoming a new member to the family.
1. Don’t buy maternity clothes
I will talk about this in more detail. Of course, when you’re pregnant, you need to expand your wardrobe to accommodate the life growing in your belly. I bought a few new items during my pregnancy, but I didn’t buy clothes that were marketed as maternity clothes. They cost a pretty penny and since pregnancy has stages, you may end up wearing a maternity shirt for 1 or 2 months alone. I bought clothes from my favorite thrift stores (or thrift stores) but in larger sizes. To save extra money, aim for sale racks. That way, you can still buy products at competitive prices while blending in with the general population. Once the baby is out and the weight is off, you can save, donate or adapt them for the next baby and continue to wear them postpartum.
2. Throw a baby shower
There’s no doubt that baby showers are the best way to collect free baby products. If you decide to create a registry, be sure to select the items you need, not the ones you might like. Don’t be afraid to go big. A friend of mine surprised us with a new crib that saved us almost $200. I also recommend asking for gift cards to large department stores so that you can flexibly buy a variety of baby products. Gift cards are also convenient because they can be saved for later use.
3. Throw a diaper party
Not all spouses like to attend baby showers. For this reason, some may prefer to have diaper parties. It’s a way for guys to get together, share food and/or drinks, and just hang out. The simple fact that men are only asked to bring diapers as gifts takes away the creativity when it comes to gift giving. We asked the men to bring diapers of all sizes and believe it or not, we didn’t have to buy diapers for our son’s first five months! The leftovers were also perfect for the next baby. If you don’t plan to have more children, you can re-gift them to another expecting family, donate them or sell them on the spot.
4. Get coupons from the hospital
Many hospitals receive a number of free samples and coupons for products that help new mothers heal. I received free nursing pads, baby brochures, nipple cream samples, pads and aspirin. All those free samples add up, so take whatever you can get from the hospital.
5. Breastfeed / pump milk if you can
Breast milk is not only the healthiest choice for a growing baby, but it is also the most cost-effective. A mother could save her family at least $1,300 by choosing to breastfeed. Unfortunately, this is not always an option. Issues such as returning to work, latch issues, health issues, and more can prevent a mother from breastfeeding. In this case, investing in a breast pump would still save you serious money. You can borrow, rent or even buy them used.
6. Returning/selling unwanted gifts
If you managed to get items that you don’t intend to use, return them or sell them as soon as possible. Waiting too long can make them harder to sell. You can also re-gift these items to someone else who may have a baby in the near future.
7. Take the guesswork out of your purchases
Before buying items for your child, ask yourself if you really need to buy them. We considered buying a changing table and then realized that a blanket on our bed or carpeted floor would work just as well. We keep a basket of wipes and diapers handy so that whenever we need to do a quick change at home, we can do it anywhere in the house.
8. Order free samples online
There are several reputable companies that provide free samples to mothers. You can get formula samples, vouchers, special offers and more.
9. DIY baby items
Save money by making some baby supplies yourself. Find homemade baby slings, booties, diaper bags, bibs and more online. It’s a great way to save money and use your time productively.
10. Homemade baby food
I can’t stress enough how much money you save by making your own baby food. Store-bought canned foods have limited nutrients and are expensive and limited in quantity and quality. Homemade baby food means that YOU are in control of what goes into your baby’s system, as well as the taste, quantity and more. Raising a healthy child also means you can save on healthcare costs in the future.
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