If it weren’t for baby showers, many new parents would have a difficult time making ends meet. But no matter how many gifts you receive for your new bundle of joy, there are countless other expenses that come up. So how do you go about saving money with a young baby?
Registries are the gifts that keep on giving — many retailers offer you the opportunity to buy for yourself at a discount anything that you didn’t receive as a gift. Babies R Us, for example, gives you 15% off of anything left on your registry.
Breastfeed If Possible
Of course, breastfeeding isn’t possible for everyone, but for those who can do it, it provides numerous health advantages over formula. Best of all, it’s essentially free, assuming you don’t have to modify your diet substantially to be able to produce milk. However, one offsetting expenditure might come from a breast pump if you choose to use one.
You might not have to try very hard to find hand-me-downs from relatives who have children older than yours — they just might offer before you even have to ask. If for some reason nothing turns up, check out thrift stores or yard sales for deals. Even eBay is a good place to find deals on used children’s clothing, or you can get cheap baby clothes from China. Finally, a great source for free kids clothing are your friends – makingmommy.com has a really excellent article on the topic.
Cloth Diapers or Bulk
Cloth and disposable diapers each have their proponents, but cloth ends up costing about 25% less; one estimate put cloth at $600 a year compared to $800 for disposables. If you do decide to use disposable diapers, make sure you buy them in bulk.
Coupons and Rewards
There’s no shortage of sites offering coupons and rewards geared toward new parents; you can sign up to receive email updates on things that you are interested in, which is a huge time savings over old-school paper couponing. You can also sign up for loyalty programs with brands like Pampers and earn points toward discounts on diapers. Amazon also has a rewards program geared toward parents.
Save Money on a Young Baby
When your child has their whole life ahead of them, you’re going to want to start saving money for them no matter what. Anything you can free up now can go toward beginning to save money for future expenses, including education.
Readers, what tips do you have to share regarding saving money on newborns?
Jackie Cohen is an award winning financial journalist turned turned financial advisor obsessed with climate change risk, data and business. Jackie holds a B.A. Degree from Macalester College and an M.A. in English from Claremont Graduate University.