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Let's look at how to prepare for a baby on a budget!
Having a baby is truly a blessing and a celebration. But it can be scary too and quite expensive. There seems to be a daunting list of things to do and buy for the baby. So how do you figure it all out?
Today we are sharing 40 Money Saving Hacks to Prepare for a Baby on a Budget, so you can look forward to the baby's birth without stressing out.
40 money saving hacks to prepare for a baby on a budget
sign up for a baby registry
When you have a baby your friends, family and co-workers will want to get gifts for the baby. Start a Baby Registry so you can get exactly what you need and not multiples of the same thing. We love the flexibility of the Amazon Baby Registry. Where else could you find everything you need in the same store at competitive prices. You'll get a FREE welcome box, a one time discount of 10-15% to purchase items you would like from the registry and a completion discount of 15% to purchase items left in the registry. Learn more about the Amazon Baby Registry and Sign up
MAKE A CHECKLIST OF BABY ITEMS YOU REALLY NEED
Decide on the baby essentials you really need. If you are on a tight budget, perhaps the Minimalist Baby Registry is the way to go. Or if you have a lot of friends and family who might want to get gifts for the baby, here's the Ultimate Baby Registry Checklist.
REGISTER FOR BIG TICKET ITEMS
When creating your baby registry, register mostly for big ticket items such as the car seat, swing, bouncer, baby carrier, diaper bag, baby monitor not for things such as books and rattles. It will feel amazing knowing that those essentials are crossed off from your list. Most often family and friends will get together and get those items you really need.
PLAN YOUR NURSERY DESIGN
You'll want to plan your baby's nursery design in advance so you know what items you should put on the registry. Otherwise you might decide later on that some items you registered for do not work well with your nursery design. Get our FREE nursery design guide to help you every step of the way!
pick YOUR NURSERY STYLE
When working on a tight budget your room for error is minimal. You'll need to decide and pick your nursery design style so you don't end up having to duplicate costs. If you know your nursery style, you'll be able to design your nursery with colors, themes and textures you are drawn to and not second guess your choices later on. Take this Nursery Style Quiz to figure out your decorating style and explore nursery designs picked just for you.
create a nursery budget budget
Create a nursery budget to decorate the nursery. Once you have your budget figured out, you'll know what you can afford. Check out this post on Decorating a Nursery for Under $1000 and see 5 Stylish and Modern Nursery Designs all for under $1000.
GET CREATIVE WITH SOURCING
When picking furniture for the nursery, get creative with sourcing. Sometimes you can find furnishings within your own home such an old dresser or an end table. Ask family and friends, if they have any furniture you could use for the nursery . Also look for garage sales and on Craigslist. We recommend you buy the crib and mattress brand new for safety reasons however.
REVIVE SECOND HAND FURNITURE
Finding nice nursery furniture secondhand is easier than you think. Look past the condition of the fabric or the color of the wood grain as long as it has good bones. You can update an old armchair with a slipcover, reupholster an old glider or update an old dresser with a coat of paint to give it a modern and beautiful look.
splurge vs. steal
Just because you are on a tight budget doesn't mean you have to skimp on style. We love scouring our favorite places for nursery furniture and decor finds on a budget. Here are some steals we love using in our designs.
PAINT THE NURSERY
Paint is the easiest and most affordable way to give the baby's nursery a beautiful look, and it will only cost you a few dollars and some time. The options are endless. You could paint the whole room or just paint a feature wall with stripes, chevrons, or stencil work.
Adding accessories such as throw pillows, wreaths, garlands, blankets, baskets are a great way to add color and texture to the nursery, while stretching your budget.
DIY AND SAVE BIG
If you're on a tight budget DIY projects can save you a lot of money and you can pull off the nursery of your dreams without breaking the bank. Seriously, you don't need to be crafty or handy with tools. There's plenty of step by step tutorials that will guide you to make anything from a beautiful nursery wreath to updating a lamp.
DOUBLE DUTY FURNITURE
When picking furniture for the nursery look for furnishings that can do double duty, saving you a lot of money. Look for a dresser instead of a changing table to use as storage and as a changing table. Or get a crib with drawers so you don't have to spend extra money on storage solutions.
SKIP CRIB BEDDING SETS
They might look so tempting and delightful, but you don't really need to spend money on crib bedding sets and bumpers. You are not supposed to put bumpers on cribs for safety reasons or loose blankets. All you really need are 2-3 fitted crib sheets.
RESIST THE URGE TO BUY FANCY BABY CLOTHES
This is hard. The outfits are extremely adorable but don't buy too many fancy baby outfits. Expect to receive a lot of clothes from well wishers. Also during the first few months all you really need are comfortable and easy to wear baby clothes such as sleepers, kimono tops and onesies. You'll appreciate clothing with zippers and snap buttons, specially when the baby is fussy and you just need to get through a diaper change.
ORGANIZE BABY CLOTHES
We are big fans of organization. Organize the baby's closet and use these FREE clothes dividers to sort baby's clothes. Not only does it help you find things faster but really saves money as well, since you'll know exactly what you have on hand.
SAVE 20% ON DIAPERS
One thing is certain once you have a baby. You'll be changing a LOT of diapers. So you'll end up spending quite a bit on diapers and wipes. Sign up for the Amazon Family membership and you'll get a 20% discount on diapers and free two day shipping. Sign up here.
BUY IN BULK
Since you'll be buying a lot of diapers and wipes, you can save a lot if you buy in bulk versus buying just enough for the week.
shop generic brands
When shopping for diapers and wipes, look for generic brands such as these diapers rather than the big brand names to save money.
choose a diaper pail without special bags
Considering the amount of diapers you'll be throwing out and the time it takes till the baby is potty trained, diaper pail refills will cost you quite a bit. We love this diaper pail that does not require any special bags.
ditch the wipe warmer
You don't really need a wipe warmer. Your baby will be just fine with wipes at room temperature.
CHOOSE A NEUTRAL BACKPACK DIAPER BAG
Pick a backpack diaper bag that has plenty of compartments in a neutral color so both you and your partner can carry it, without having to buy two different bags. Read this post on our top picks for diaper bags.
KEEP A DIAPER BAG IN THE CAR
Keep a regular bag stocked with diapers, wipes, change of clothes, a sweater, a blanket and a travel clutch in the car at all times. It will come in handy when you realize you've forgotten to bring your diaper bag or hadn't re-stocked the diaper bag. Otherwise you'll end up having to run to the store to gather the diapering essentials.
choose to Breastfeed
Breastfeeding is hard but totally worth it if it's possible. You'll also end up saving money because you wouldn't have to buy formula.
SET up a breastfeeding station
To succeed in breastfeeding, set up a breastfeeding station where you will be comfortable breastfeeding and have everything you need. With all the breastfeeding essentials on hand, you will be more likely to get the baby to latch and be able to position the baby properly.
create a pumping station
If you want to bottle-feed the baby breast-milk when you are at work, you'll need to start pumping and storing your breast-milk for future use. Not only is breast-milk good for the baby but you also wouldn't have to spend money on formula. Set up a pumping station to allow you to pump comfortably.
wait to purchase a breast pump
Though lots of moms purchase their breast pumps before the baby is born, you should wait till after the baby is born. Sometimes babies have difficulty latching or there's an inverted nipple or some other issue and the doctor will give a prescription for a breast pump. So wait before you purchase a breast pump since a good pump will cost a bit of money and you might get it for free.
GET FREE BREASTFEEDING ADVICE
While there are classes that offer breastfeeding instruction and advice for a fee, you can get free lactation consultations at the hospital without spending any additional money. There are local organizations that offer home visits and consultations for free as well.
BUY WASHABLE NURSING PADS
Get reusable nursing pads which are machine washable, to save money. We love these ultra soft, hypo-allergic bamboo nursing pads.
INCREASE YOUR HSA CONTRIBUTIONS
Call your insurance company once you find out you are pregnant to figure out your portion of the costs for delivery. Then reduce your out of pocket expenses for labor and delivery by contribution monthly to your Health Saving Account.
WAIT-LIST for childcare asap
Most of the affordable and highly rated child care facilities rarely have open spots available. You'll need to wait-list as soon as you find out you are pregnant to get a spot for the baby.
get your household organized
Did you know that getting organized will save you money? Take time to plan your day and your week as well as organize your finances and paperwork systems. Plus with a new baby, it will put you in the driver’s seat of your household. Download this free PREGNANCY PLANNER + HOME BINDER to help you organize your household.
DE-CLUTTER YOUR HOME
While you are nesting, take time to de-clutter your home. Not only will de-cluttering help you make your home happier and cleaner but it will also save you money and make you money. That's right, cash in on items you no longer want by selling them or donating them and claiming a tax deduction.
plan your meals
Meal planning done right can do wonders for your budget and allow you to save more money. When you plan your meals ahead you’re likely to spend less when grocery shopping. In fact, when you go to the store without a list, you can spend up to 40% more! Use the Menu Planner in the Home Binder to plan your weekly meals.
LOWER YOUR GROCERY BILL
While It’s important to eat healthy, you can save a lot of money by finding an affordable grocery store that provides healthy options without sacrificing quality. So look around to find a grocery where the prices are the most competitive such as ALDI, Walmart and Kroger.
MAKE FREEZER MEALS FOR THE FIRST 3 WEEKS
The first few weeks with the baby is going to be hard. You'll be functioning on very little sleep, adjusting to having a new baby and your body still recovering from labor and delivery. Plus, if you are breastfeeding you are going to be hungry all the time. So making freezer meals at least for the first three weeks is going to be a game changer. No matter how tired you are, you'll have food in the house and all you would have to do is warm it up!
SUBSCRIBE to A diaper delivery services
When was the last time you walked through Target and picked just one item. If you are like us, it's never the case. One diaper run can end up costing quite a bit. So subscribe to a diaper delivery service such as Amazon Family and have your baby's diapers delivered to the front door.
GET FREE MONEY
We are not kidding! There are some fantastic cash back apps that will give you a percentage of the money you spend. The Dosh app is a hugely popular smartphone app that gives you cash back every time you make a purchase with your credit card. You don't have to scan receipts, or promo codes. You can download for free and get $5 for signing up.
START A PREGNANCY SAVINGS CHALLENGE
A pregnancy saving challenge essentially challenges you to save money each week of your pregnancy. At the end of the challenge you'll have saved up a specific amount for expenses during your maternity leave. You can do it!! And if you stick with it, once the baby is born, both you and your partner will be less stressed and be able to enjoy your time as a family. Read this post to Learn about the Pregnancy Savings Challenge. We have three different challenges, pick one and stick with it!
With these Money Saving Hacks you'll be able to cut down on your expenses and increase your savings while getting ready for your baby on a budget without stressing out!
Last Updated on February 3, 2021 by Tira Attygalla