Being responsible for a little human is tough. Caring for their every emotional and physical need is hard work but also expensive. When you’re expecting it can get costly and parents (especially first-time parents) are huge targets when it comes to shopping for their babies. Brands will often sell variations of the same product when the cheaper one will usually do and they will whack prices up just because.
Babies can be expensive, but they don’t have to be! Here are some of my tips on budgeting for a baby.
Make a Shopping List
As soon as we found out that we were expecting, I made a spreadsheet of everything that was needed – but ONLY needed. I didn’t include everything that I would have liked, for the sake of it. We kept everything that we liked and wanted separate, so that if any family or friends wanted to buy something, we gave them ideas from that list.
We kept to our list and was frugal when it came to buying it all. We ended up budgeting around £300 for everything and I’m pretty sure we were quite under budget once we got everything.
Buy Second Hand
Babies don’t wear their clothes out and they always look brand new, so it seems silly to buy it all from new. We only bought 3 outfits and 2 babygros from new, the rest were second hand.
Facebook Marketplace is perfect for baby stuff, we got a ton of great deals on there, including a massive bundle of baby clothing for £10 (which was pretty much everything we needed!) We also found baby bootfairs quite handy when we were having Joshua, we got lots of cheap stuff such as a baby bath for £2 and montior worth £60 for £5. But they can also have a lot of stuff that’s still overly priced, so it’s a case of wading through everything to find the deals.
Buy a Travel System
Both of our children have had travel systems, because they come with absolutely everything you need. Some can be very bulky, but there are some options out there that are great for smaller cars now. But don’t spend hundreds on a brand new, top of the range travel system when you can get superb ones second hand.
We bought Oliver a second hand Silver Cross travel system, that came with the car seat, all adaptors and lots of accessories. The whole lot is worth around over £800 or so and we got it for just £120! It’s in such good condition that had we not decided to stop at two, I would be keeping it.
Buy in Bulk
For everything that you would be needing to buy weekly (or monthly) start stock piling. Once I got to around six months pregnant, we started buying one or two items each week during the weekly food shop. It meant that we didn’t notice the extra few quid and we were getting a collection at home to help during the first few weeks.
We stock piled things such as nappies, formula milk, nappy cream and washing detergent (we use separate for Oliver).
Make the Switch to Cloth
I could sit here and tell you all about the pros of using cloth nappies, but you’re not here for that. Cloth nappies are so incredibly cheap, compared to disposables, that anyone who is looking for areas to cut costs this is the switch for you.
While cloth nappies can be expensive at first, it’s in one lump and you will never have to buy anymore. But they can get addictive as they come in so many different designs and styles, so you may just find yourself buying more anyway. Or, like me, find yourself ordering cute nappies at 3am during night feeds!
Half of the reason we chose to go with cloth nappies is because of how cheap it is. We bought all the nappies we need for just £40, including all inserts etc. We bought a mixture of well-known brands and less known (cheaper) ones.
So, those are some of my tips for saving money when you’re expecting a baby. We spent so much when we had Joshua, but I guess he was our first-born so we were allowed to go a bit crazy, right?
Do you have any tips on saving for a baby? What did you do to budget better?