Ways to Save Money with a Baby

Having a baby is a life experience like no other.  With all the joy and excitement often comes a hefty bill too.  If you don’t already know first hand, babies can be very expensive.  Between medical bills, car seats, cribs and baby gear, having a baby is a huge expenditure.  While some of the costs are unavoidable, there are many ways to save money with a baby.  Usually first time moms aren’t aware of the vast ways to be thrifty, but veteran moms know the drill.

Today we’re bringing you some tips and tricks on ways to save money with a baby from experienced moms:

Ways to Save Money with a Baby

Buy used clothes, toys and baby products.  Babies grow out of clothes and toys so quickly that buying everything new becomes extremely pricey.  Baby consignment is a huge industry as families are looking to save money and live greener.  Look for seasonal pop-up consignment sales through community centers and local organizations and research local children’s consignment stores.  When you are done with the items, sell them back to earn extra money for the next stage in your baby’s development.

Develop a hand-me-down network.  Friends with older children can be the best resources on many levels.  Not only can they give you parenting advice, but they can also share items they no longer need.  Ask several friends with same-sex kids slightly older than yours if you can have or borrow their clothes, toys and gear.  After you are done with them, pay it forward by passing everything along to another family.

Use cloth diapers.  Many families save money by cloth diapering.  Rather than purchasing years worth of diapers, a few adjustable, reusable diapers can last from infancy to toddlerhood.  Modern cloth diapers are easier than ever to use and many can be used with an inner disposable lining to avoid major messes.  Plus, you can use cloth diapers from child-to-child to further reduce costs and help the environment too.

Take advantage of free activities.  Free fun is the best kind of fun.  Look for free story times at local libraries and book stores.  In spring, summer and fall many local parks have festivals with kids’ zones that may include bouncy houses, face painting, live entertainment and other great activities.  Some businesses also offer free activities for kids.  Check with area hardware stores, restaurants and toy stores to find out their complementary offerings.  Lastly, many museums open their doors to the public for free several times a year.  Take advantage of those days before springing for full-price tickets.

Ways to Save Money with a BabyBreastfeed.  Breastfeeding saves a ton of money!  Depending on how long you exclusively breastfeed, this most natural way to nourish your baby can save you between $2,000 and $4,000.  Formula, bottles and other feeding gear can be expensive.  Breastfeeding only requires two priceless elements: your sweet baby and dedication from mom.

Join discount clubs.  While signing up for clubs may feel tedious, it can save you a lot of money.  Most retailers, especially baby superstores, have clubs that offer great member discounts and other special advantages such as free shipping or bulk order discounts.  Discount warehouses are often a good place to stock up on diapers, baby shampoo and other bulk items if you have space to store them.

Use coupons.  Moms are among the best couponers.  Spend some time organizing your coupons and be vigilant about using them at the grocery store and other places you shop frequently.  There are many coupon websites that you can subscribe to that send coupons directly to your inbox for items you use regularly.  One piece of advice: don’t buy items simply because you have a coupon.  Only use them for products you really need.

Try products before you buy them.  Many brands, especially baby products, offer samples.  Try out diaper creams, wipes and baby foods before you purchase them.  If you can’t find a sample, ask a friend to try some of their things to make sure you and your little one really like them.

Ways to Save Money with a BabyUse convertible items.  Many manufacturers are wising up and helping you save money by creating convertible products.  Cribs, car seats and strollers come in convertible options, as well as some grow-with-me toys.  Cribs usually have different mattress height settings depending on your baby’s age.  Many of them convert into a day bed, toddler bed or even double bed as your baby grows.  Infant car seats usually max out at around 30 to 40 lbs but some toddler car seats can be converted into booster seats for older kids.  Strollers also have different settings depending on your child’s age.  Look for these products so you don’t have to start from square one at the next developmental stage.

Make your own baby food.  Once your baby reaches six months of age you can introduce solids along with breast milk.  Store-bought packaged baby food can be quite expensive but buying whole fruits and veggies and pureeing them yourself is much more cost effective.  Plus, you can inspect and select your own produce to ensure it is fresh and wholesome for your little tot.