30 ways to save before baby arrives
Tahlia Mandie of The Parenting Files blog, and founder of Kakadu Plum Co, whips through 30 clever ways to save money before your baby enters the world.
The moment you find out you’re having a baby, excitement begins. The lead-up to meeting your new baby is one of the most beautiful and exhilarating times that anyone can ever experience. You can’t wait, but all the associated costs can become a little worrisome.
The reality is, as soon as a baby arrives, so do expenses. However, with a little planning and thought, there are ways to cut costs. Check out these 30 tried and tested ways to save before your baby arrives:
- Buy essential items only; that is, cot, pram and car seat.
- Buy second-hand. Most items are used by bubs for a minimal amount of time because babies grow and change so quickly. You’ll be surprised how many excellent-condition items you can find second-hand, such as rockers and change tables.
- Join a local second-hand buy/swap group – either online or through your community. So many items can be bought and swapped at very reasonable prices and a fraction of the RRP.
- Purchase your items from a store that will price match or reduce prices off other advertised prices.
- Get DIY savvy and create your own wall art and nursery decor.
- Become a member of your local library. You and bubs will love the regular change in stories.
- Keep an eye out for baby expos and a chance to fill those goodie bags or get expo specials.
- Don’t turn down ‘hand-me-down’ clothing and other baby items.
- Plan a house declutter day and resell items you don’t need through the second-hand buy/swap groups.
- Set a budget – it may seem logical, but the key is discipline.
- Ask your friends who already have children if they have any unused items – you may be surprised how many items other people don’t use and are happy to get rid of.
- Hire a baby capsule – most councils lease out baby capsules for a six-month period for a fraction of the cost it would be to buy one.
- When you’re buying clothes, buy a season or two ahead and always buy in the sales.
- Cook dinners in bulk and freeze them before baby arrives. With a little planning, not only is it easy to prepare a meal when the hectic times begin, but it will save you heading to the store and buying takeaway food.
- Don’t get caught up in the hype of all the baby gadgets – many are unnecessary.
- Find a bargain at baby markets or other local markets.
- Don’t get sucked in by all the baby sales, especially online. You don’t really know what you will need until baby arrives, and you can always ask a friend or family member to help pick up the essential items you may have forgotten while you’re in hospital.
- Buy a ‘belly band’ – this handy item (a stretchy band you wear over your waist) will keep you in your pre-pregnancy clothes for longer.
- Fall back in love with op shops.
- Don’t buy full price anything.
- Be careful with how much you do buy; for example, newborn nappies – they won’t be in them for long.
- If you have a large family or lots of close friends, bear in mind they may want to spoil the new arrival with presents, so only buy essentials.
- Make sure you do thorough research about what you really do and don’t need so you’re not tempted to buy silly baby gadgets and products that stores, advertisers and packaging tell you that you ‘need’.
- Relax – if you don’t stress about what you need, and what you don’t need, you may also save a few extra dollars as you won’t be trawling the net or down at the shops looking to buy things!
- Keep baby’s sex a surprise – if you don’t know the sex of the baby, you may not be so impulsive when buying baby clothes.
- Make your own baby food for when it is time to introduce solids, instead of buying premade or packaged options.
- Buy essentials in bulk. Many baby items, such as wipes and nappies, can be bought in bulk at much cheaper prices.
- Do your research – don’t always expect the salesperson’s ‘best price’. Find your own best price and bargain!
- Don’t buy baby shoes – seriously, they are a hassle to put on and are generally a fashion statement with no functional use.
- Ask for advice. Ask your friends and family for insights into how they saved on expenses or what they would do differently next time.
When you add up the bouncers, car seats, cot, pram, bottles, monitors and more, you can easily spend thousands of dollars before you have even seen your baby’s face. Be wise. Be excited, but don’t go overboard.