Preparing for a baby is one of the most important things a parent needs to do from the very beginning of the pregnancy. Baby items are not the most inexpensive things and dollars add up really fast. When preparing for a baby, I was fortunate enough to have some help and suggestions from the people I love. From borrowing old baby items like cribs and blankets to considering breastfeeding were just a few ways that I was able to prepare for my baby and not have to worry too much about a budget.
Borrowing items is a great way to prepare for a baby, have the necessities and save money. My mother allowed me to use the old crib she had stored away and a few of my friends that had been pregnant previously lent me some of their maternity clothes. I soon realized that I didn’t need to buy everything that I needed. Even for me, a person who has pride and prefers not to ask anyone for anything, there are times when it really helps out. I found that with some people, once I made the announcement, women were offering to lend me various items. There is nothing wrong with it and no one is going to look down upon you for accepting the offer
If there are certain things that need to be bought like clothes for the baby and toys, garage sales and thrift shops are good places to look. Yes, these items are used but many items that I found at these locations were in great condition. If you are going to be using items found at these places, be sure that they are cleaned and sanitized before using them on the baby or allowing the baby to use them when they are a little bit older. Other items you could look for are car seats and strollers. There are many people that try to get rid of these items because they are not going to use them anymore.
Another idea is to wait for the baby shower and then determine what else you would need from there. Many guests get creative when choosing a baby shower gift and it may be something that you can cross of the list later. I thought that I was going to have to buy a lot of baby clothes when I was preparing but the kind guest that attended my baby shower (and even individuals who didn’t) bought a significant amount of baby clothing that really came in handy.
Another way to save money and become closer to your child is breastfeeding. You will save money on formula. Bottles will not be needed in the early stages of breastfeeding but you will want to teach your baby how to use a bottle for those times you cannot breastfeed. Breast pumps are available in many different styles and are life savers when you return to work and leave the child with a babysitter or child care center. You still save significantly on formula prices and you do not always have to be present when it is time to feed the baby.
Also, prepare in advance for your maternity leave. Save up and if you don’t have a budget for your family already, make one. This will feel like a very financially stressful time, but if you use money wisely and use the tips above, you will be fine and won’t have to worry about finances as much as you would think. If you need help creating a budget or sticking with your budget, talk to your partner and figure out what the best plan of attack would be. Visit a financial advisor and do your best to stick to it.