You can save money on baby items by participating in clothing swaps, buying neutral the first time around and borrowing larger items.
By Chelsey Edens
Times Coupon Queen
This year the Easter Bunny brought my husband and me a sweet baby girl to add to our family.
This probably wasn’t the ideal gift my little boy was hoping for, but he is enjoying his role as big brother.
When we found out that we would be welcoming our sweet girl, my mind of course went straight to planning for her arrival and not spending a fortune because let’s not forget we have a 20-month-old at home to provide for still.
Here are some tips that I used when planning to bring home baby Bennett Grey.
Like most moms I had saved all my son’s clothes in the event that our second baby would also be a boy. When we found out that our baby was going to be a girl, I have to admit, I panicked a little bit. Boys are great, don’t get me wrong, but their clothes are “eh” at best. Have you seen how adorable everything is for girls?
The hardest part about having a girl so far is holding back from buying everything I see. Luckily, we have some amazing friends who gave us a lot of clothes for our little one.
So my first tip: Don’t say no to hand-me-downs. We were so blessed when our first one came to have a friend who had twins almost exactly a year before he was born and gave us all of her sons’ hand-me- downs. She pretty much clothed my child for the first 18 months of his life; it was amazing!
This time around, I happened to find out that we were having a girl around the time another friend gave birth to her first boy; she had two girls already. When we talked, we discovered that she had a ton of girl clothes she needed to get rid of, and I had a ton of boy clothes to get rid of, so we swapped. Clothing swaps like this happen all the time, so don’t shy away from them. Babies will never stay in a size long enough to wear out the clothes.
Buy neutral the first time around. When I was pregnant with my son, I knew that I wanted a second. I also knew that the old wives tale “pencil test” said that I would have a girl my second time around.
I decided to go neutral on many of my larger purchases. As far as our bouncer, swing and exersaucer, we chose an “under the sea” theme, and for our highchair we went with a standard dark brown wood.
All these larger items are so expensive, and you don’t want to feel obligated to buy a new bouncer because the one you have is hot pink with butterflies, and you are having a boy this time around.
If this happens to be your first baby, don’t feel bad asking to borrow from a friend. These larger items usually only get used until the baby gets mobile — around 10 months or so. Most friends will be happy to let you borrow them.
The best thing about borrowing these items is being able to give them back once you are done. You can’t believe how much room our son’s things took up in our attic before we finally were able to bring them back down.
Babies are expensive. Some studies suggest that a baby’s first year costs more than $10,000 on average. And that doesn’t include the cost of the birth!
The good news is, there are so many ways to save money on all of your baby expenses. All parents go through that panic of wondering how they are going to afford a baby, so most moms are more than willing to help out other moms.
Just remember, when you are done having babies and you want to get rid of all your baby things, find another mom who is just starting her journey and donate to her.