Babies are expensive little creatures. With all the wonderful things they bring, they don't come with user manuals or an accessories kit. And they develop so rapidly that, as soon as you gather all the tools to bring them through a certain phase, it's time to head back to the store again for more stuff.
All parents could benefit from cutting corners here and there.
Check out these inexpensive ways to score great baby goods for less:
Coupons - Save lots of money on diapers, wipes and formula by clipping coupons. Those free parenting magazines delivered to your door each month are full of them. By taking the time to flip through each issue and clip out what you need, you can easily save between $5-$25 per month on baby supplies. Also, visit each of your favorite diaper/formula manufacturers' websites and sign up for special offers - if you are on their list, they tend to mail out discount coupons regularly. A little effort adds up to big savings!
Clothing Swaps - The great thing about having a friend with a baby slightly older than yours, aside from their priceless advice, is the leftover baby swag. If you happen to have a friend with a baby six months or older than yours, ask if you can borrow some of their child's gently used baby clothes. Sure, every parent has a few new articles of clothing for their sweetie that they'd like to treasure as mementos, or save for another child, but by arranging a clothing swap, your pal will gain back some much needed storage space and you'll save tons of money on clothes your kid will only sprout out of in seconds flat.
And why not pay it forward? If you have a friend with a slightly younger child, offer to loan them clothing that your child has outgrown. Keep the good karma going!
Furniture - It's great to save money on certain big-ticket items like baby furniture, car seats and the like. But for safety's sake, some of these items are much better to splurge on. Here's what to buy used, and what to buy new:
Buy Used With Caution
Food - Making and freezing your own baby food can save you a ton of money at the grocery store, not to mention offer your child nourishment free of additives and preservatives. Just grab your handy Cuisinart Elite 14-Cup Food Processor and get to it!