I remember as if it were now when I had my first child 14 years ago. I was studying my ultrasound career, my work at that time did not pay me much, my husband was also studing and the truth, our financial situation was not good at all. However, having an abortion was not an option for us, and so we decided to face all the adversities and fight to adjust and give our baby the best.
If that is your situation, do not feel alone, many parents have been or are going through the same situation as you.
In this article, I will give you some tips that helped me a lot when I had my second child to prepare without breaking my budget and my finances, Ready, let’s begin.
1. First things first, you need to check your budget and create a plan.
The key to being prepared for the birth of your baby without breaking your finances is to review how are you financially. Making a monthly budget can be simple, you must see what money you earn and what money you are spending monthly, based on that budget you must make adjustments to your expenses.
Small changes such as:
Not buying a coffee daily on the way to work, instead of making it at home.
Bring your prepared lunches from home.
Buy only the neccesities, being mindful of your expenses.
Buy things in bulk or in large quantities to save money.
Go out less on the monthly basis etc..
When you have everything planned try to save a small percentage of the money for later.
Expenses like buying things for your baby later on, will be covered.
You also need to take a look at the big picture of What’s happening next after you have your baby? Ask yourself questions like:
Will I take maternity leave and for how long?
Will I return to work earlier or can I be out for 3 months or more?
Does it even make sense financially to pay someone to look after your baby after all?
Will you return to work at all after maternity leave?
Once you analyze all these financial changes and create a plan to adapt to your new situation, having a baby on a budget will not be a problem for you.
2. Starting a baby emergency fund is a must.
Creating an emergency fund for your baby goes hand in hand with step number one, if you can save at least one thousand dollars by the time your baby is born you will probably have the first six months of your baby expenses already covered.
If you don’t think you can save a lot of money by the time your baby is born, maybe you can try to earn extra money in other ways.
You can sell things that you no longer use in applications such as Offer up or Facebook, a garage sale in your neighborhood can give you a little boost, also if you have a 401K with your employer you can consider taking out a loan to return it little by little at a later time.
3. Be truly honest about the things you really need for your baby.
These days there are so many beautiful things to buy for a baby but the reality is that newborns need only a few things the first 6 months.
If you are actually having your baby on a budget then you must separate what you want from what you really need.
Some of the things that you want but do not need can be included in the baby registry so you don’t have to pay for them.
4. Thrift shops, garage sales & friends who are done having kids are going to be your best friends now.
On Thrift shops or garage sales, you can find very good and practically unused items, and when it comes to a garage sale, many sellers don’t think twice and give you a good deal if you buy many things at once.
On the other hand, if you have friends who have finished having babies, let them know that you can pick up what they no longer use.
To be honest, there are things that I particularly do not like to take from other people, things like my children’s bottles and breast pumps, I preferred to buy those items in a new condition, however, I accepted other things like:
The swing and a chair.
A crib mattress.
Diaper and a bottle Warmer.
Blankets and bed sheets.
Baby gate, toys and some baby books.
A changing table.
Maternity and baby clothes.
I remember that for my second baby, I had so many things saved from my first child, I also had collected many things from a friend who gave me a lot that at the end the only thing I had to buy was a small piece of furniture with drawers to keep his clothes, and the cost? 200 dollars, that’s it.
With respect to this last point, to buy baby furniture, In stores like Walmart, target or amazon you can find good prices and good quality as well, so don’t hesitate to check them out.
5. Take full advantage of freebie offers and samples.
Freebies and samples are everywhere, but you have to pay attention to them.
From the hospital, you can leave with an infinite number of items like diapers, mesh underwear, bottles, pads, peri bottle, etc.
In the medical offices where you go to your monthly check ups, you can also take things like baby formula, and there are countless of magazines with companies that offer freebies online, you just have to ask.
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6. Don’t be shy about what you need for the baby when people ask.
When people ask you, don’t be shy to say what you need.
I remember when I had my second child, I say at work that I wasn’t going to have a baby shower because I didn’t have the money, but someone asked me what I needed for the baby, and I just answered, a high chair for him to eat, and diapers, a lot of diapers.
And what do you think happened? my coworkers celebrated me at work a baby shower, they gave me the high chair and 3 boxes of diapers, with 300 diapers each. Moral, don’t be shy to say or ask, or express your concerns, your family, friends or coworkers are going to love giving you a hand, believe me on this one.
7. Use your baby registry to your advantage.
One good thing is that baby registration exists. Some small tips to make your baby registry a success.
List the things you need and the things you want.
Try to include everything you need in the registry, and if you are one of the mommies that have many relatives and friends, you can also include the things you want.
Let everyone know where and how to find your registry, and try to choose a store that lets you return or change things you don’t use.
When I had my first child, at the baby shower, they gave me many items that I thought were not necessary and I could return them all, I had a credit of almost 700 dollars that I could buy in that store many months later with that credit.
8. Consider Breastfeeding if you can.
Always choosing to breastfeed your baby is a good option, not only because you are providing all the nutrients and antibodies that your baby needs but it also helps you to lose weight, and bond with your new baby. But the most important thing, you will save a lot of money in the process.
But do not worry, if you are like me, and you cannot breastfeed, check the medical office where you go or the pediatrician and let them know that you need formula. And always when buying, check out supermarkets such as Walmart, for the best prices.
9. Consider making your own baby food.
Doing a baby puree isn’t as hard as you might think, and it comes with a huge bonus, it’s more natural and saves your newborn from all those chemicals and additives within baby food.
It doesn’t seem like baby food costs that much but when you’re just buying weeks worth it really starts adding up.
I, as a good Cuban mommy, have a good recipe for a good baby puree.
You only need to boil a chicken breast with vegetables of your choice in water, just add a pinch of salt, and a little bit extra virgin olive oil in the water, when the cooking part is complete, beat everything in the blender and voila, you have a baby puree, more yummy and natural that you think.
For some awesome freebies, check this link.
Other post to read after.
As you can see, having a baby on a budget is possible, but keep in mind, that having a baby brings additional expenses. You must prepare yourself, after all, you have at least 8 months to do it.
With a little cunning you can achieve it, after all, the only thing your baby needs in great amounts is your love and dedication, and those things cost nothing.
I hope I could help you with this article, leave me your comments if you think I omitted something you do, so we can help other mommies.