Frugal Parenting: Cut Costs, Even With an Infant

It’s often joked that having a child is the most expensive thing that you will ever do – and it’s true. On average, parents spend between $7,000 and $14,600 per year on their child’s needs, which can difficult for some people to adjust to, depending on spending habits. Of course, your little bundle of joy is invaluable to you.

It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by the sudden need to overhaul your budget, but it’s doable, no matter what your income may be. A lot of inexperienced parents simply don’t know how to cut costs – but we have some tips to help!

 

Take Advantage of the Maternity Ward

A lot of manufacturers will offer freebies that hospitals can give to new mothers after they have their babies, but your nurse might be a bit busy and forget to give you yours. Don’t be afraid to ask – you could end up leaving with a sizeable care package of diapers, pacifiers, wipes, blankets, and more. They might even have promotional offers, like diaper coupons and free samples, to offer you. Of course, it’s also a good idea to try to avoid any extra hospital fees if you’re on a tight budget. Remember that there are additional charges for private rooms, and sometimes even amenities like using the TV.

 

Breastfeeding: A Natural Money Saver

Some new mothers are a little off-put by the idea of breastfeeding, but it’s natural, healthy, and a great way to cut costs. Formula will cost you about $1,400 in the first year, but breast milk is free! It’s also a good idea to ask around and see if you can borrow a breast pump from someone who no longer needs it. They can cost anywhere from several hundred to over a thousand dollars, and it’s safe to use someone else’s as long as you buy new disposable plastic attachments. Finally, try out breastfeeding and make sure that you’re going to stick with it before you go buying nursing-friendly clothing.

 

Save on Healthcare

After you leave the maternity ward, your pediatrician may still have samples and coupons to offer you, so stock up if that is the case. A lot of new mothers are quick to take their babies to the hospital for ever irregularity, but it’s always more cost-effective to call your doctor for advice before heading off to the ER every time you have an issue. And when shopping for thermometers, opt for a digital oral or rectal thermometer – they’re about a third of the cost of ear thermometers, and they’re doctor-recommended.

 

Shop Smart

Sign up for every baby-oriented newsletter you know of so that you can always have coupons and deals on your radar. If you’re feeling particularly frugal, you can even start making your own baby food to save some cash and have a little fun!

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