Finding out you’re expecting a baby is one of the most magical things. But often the good news is tinged with a touch of panic when you inevitably start thinking about how you’re going to afford all the things a baby needs! You might sign up to a few newsletters or read a few ‘preparing for baby’ books that are full of lists of must have items which will make it seem like you need to buy so much stuff you’ll need another spare room to keep it in on top of the nursery! But no need to panic, you can actually get away with purchasing a lot less than you might think you need from reading all these lists!
Firstly talk to your friends about what they did and didn’t use, and if they’re friends who live a similar lifestyle to you then that’s even better as their list is likely to be more similar to your potential essentials list! For example if you don’t drive you probably don’t need a travel system, and if you live on the 8th floor of a building with no lift you might not want a buggy at all, a sling might be a better option for you!
Once you’ve whittled down your essentials (not forgetting that the list isn’t a be all and end all!) you need to think about how to pay for it all! Obviously in an ideal world you’ve got a stack of £50’s under the bed to use but that’s not likely!
A good way to stock up on an essential that will be on everyone’s list; Nappies, is to buy a pack or two with your food shop each week, in varying sizes. You should be able to exchange un-opened packs too if you do end up with too many that are too small. The Tesco Baby Event is a great one to look out for as it offers great discounts on things you will actually need, like wipes and nappies!
If you can set aside a sum of money from each pay check before the baby arrives then you’ll have a nice little pot to dip into when you do need something, and keep an eye out for sales especially in the run up to Christmas and the January sales. We picked up a lot of reduced baby clothes in bigger sizes and stored them away for future use!
Joining your local selling groups on facebook and setting up alerts on freecycle is a great idea too, it;s a sad fact of life that babies grow up and therefore people are always selling and passing on their outgrown bits and bobs, highchairs, cots and pushchairs especially and there are some real bargains to be had!
Another way to save on the ‘essentials’ is to be specific when people ask you if there is anything you’d like for the baby (either for your baby shower if you have one or for arrival presents) Many people find it hard to know what to get and would love a bit of guidance rather than a random decision made in Mothercare! Plus you get to tick a few things off the list too, so it’s a win win!