Wednesday, February 15, 2006

How Parents Can Save Money With A New Baby

I came across this article titled 32 Ways to Save Money When You Have A Baby over at What does saving have to do with investing for my college future? Well, if I can teach my parents to save money, maybe they will take a portion of the savings and donate that to my college fund. I'd much rather it go there than being spent on something that I could get for less.

If you have a newborn, you're probably panicked too. No wonder: Depending on your spending habits and child-care needs, you'll likely shell out $7,000 to $14,600 annually between now and your little one's second birthday. But there's hope. Through trial and error, I learned a lot about raising a daughter on a budget. Now that my second girl is here, I've gotten even savvier. Here are ways you, too, can cut your baby expenses by half—or even more.

Here is a summary of the ways you can save according to the article:

At the hospital

1. Say no to add-ons.
2. Don't turn on the TV.
3. Ask for coupons and samples.
4. Take the toiletries.

Budget Breastfeeding

5. Nurse if you possibly can.
6. Borrow a breast pump (**be sure to read comments**)
7. Find out in advance where you can get free breastfeeding advice.
8. Don't rush to buy a breastfeeding wardrobe.


9. Don't buy baby clothes far in advance.
10. Scrimp on all-in-ones.
11. Choose unisex shades and styles.
12. Lose the shoes.
13. Buy secondhand special-occasion clothes.

Baby gear

14. Look for furniture and accessories that do double duty.
15. Return unwanted gifts promptly.
16. Don't buy crib pillows.
17. Buy just one or two bottles before your baby is born.
18. Set up a photo Website.
19. When it comes to diapers, buy in bulk.
20. Test-drive a stroller before you buy it.
21. Turn to your local library for classes and games.
22. Keep a baby-care bag in your car.

Health Care

23. Ask your pediatrician for free product samples.
24. Call your pediatrician to talk over a problem before setting up an appointment.
25. Don't buy an ear thermometer. .

Baby Food

26. Hold on to free formula samples and coupons.
27. Sign up for baby-food company newsletters and coupon offers.
28. Make some baby food.
29. Package crunchy toddler snacks in individual airtight containers as soon as you buy them.

Remember to place a little of any money you save into the college savings account!


piannist said...

This article offers some good avice, but please DO NOT take their recommendation about sharing electric breast pumps. IT IS DANGEROUS ADVICE. You can contact breast pump manufacturers for more information (the most common is at, but the short of it is that due to the nature of the design of the pump, bacteria from one user can enter the pump itself and not just that replacement tubing (the article recommends just replacing the tubing). The owner's manuals state this clearly, but many consumers think that it's just a ploy to sell more breast pumps. It is not - there is a definite health issue, and I have verified this with health care professionals. Sharing electric pumps that are not hospital grade can lead to infection!
I have also just contacted the website that published the article with this information - if anyone has any doubts or concerns, PLEASE do some research on your own or contact manufacturers to get the answers you need.

Tiredbuthappy said...

Um, I had a handed down pump that worked fine. I hear you, Piannist, but I tend to be pretty relaxed about germs and such. The pump I had hadn't been used in six years. I boiled everything that I could and figured all the other bacteria were probably dead.

But listen to Piannist, everybody, not to me. I'm probably too relaxed about this stuff.