Raising a newborn baby can be expensive. It is reported that raising a baby can cost anywhere from $7,000 to $14,000 in the first year alone, and that by the time a child reaches age seventeen they will have cost the parents about $250,000 . That doesn’t even include the cost of college! With figures that high, saving money can be a high priority for parents. Here are some great ways to help you save money during your baby’s first year.
Buy a Convertible Car Seat
An infant car seat can be convenient, as it can be removed from the car while baby is in it and can often be attached to a stroller. However, an infant car seat can only be used until the baby reaches twenty to thirty pounds, at which point a bigger car seat must be purchased. A convertible car seat is a car seat that can be either rear or forward facing, and will accommodate an infant that weighs anywhere between five to forty or more pounds. This will allow you to get a much longer use out of just one car seat.
While breastfeeding is not only healthier for your baby, it can also save you a ton of cash. Formula can cost $1,000 or more for that first year, and breastfeeding is significantly lower. There will be costs associated with breastfeeding, which include breastfeeding bras, nursing wear, ointments, and possibly a breast pump, but those costs will be nowhere near what the cost of formula would be.
Buy Store Brand Formula
This is one place where buying the store brand is honestly the same as buying name brand. The FDA requires that all store brand formulas meet the same nutritional requirements as the brand name. This can save as much as fifty percent on formula costs.
Get Those Coupons
Almost all of your major baby goods manufacturers will offer mailing lists that you can sign up for to receive coupons on everything from diapers, to formula, to wipes, and toys. It has also been reported that checking “Planning to Breastfeed” instead of “Planning to Use Formula” will get you better coupons and more samples from formula manufacturers.
Skip the Baby Detergent
When manufacturers of laundry detergent offered lines of detergent that were solely filled with fragrances and/or dyes buying laundry detergent specifically for babies was important. However, now that you can purchase regular laundry detergent that is dye and fragrance free you can skip the baby detergent and buy the regular laundry detergent that is just as safe for baby’s delicate skin.
Make Your Own Baby Food
Once your baby is eating solids, making your own baby food can be a great way to save on baby food. Not only is it less expensive but it is much fresher. With just a food processor you can use bananas, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and more to make healthy baby food for your baby.
Buy Unisex Colors
Sure those pink onesies, crib sheets, and socks are adorable for your little girl but believe me she won’t wear them out before she outgrows them which means they can be used again when her little brother or sister comes along. By buying unisex colors like mint green, yellow, or brown you can use those cute little items a second time around regardless of whether your second child is a boy or girl.
Skip the Personalization
Just like the colors having everything personalized with baby’s name makes it harder to use that second time around. Instead of personalizing blankets, diaper bags, and burp cloths with baby’s name opt for the first letter of your last name or skip the personalization all the way around.