This whole pregnancy thing is so new to me, and I have been getting tons of great advice from friends, online friends, and total strangers. I’m a member of the Frugal Living community on Blog Frog, so asked those fun folks for their best frugal pregnancy tips to share with y’all. They came up with some great stuff! I’ll share all of the tips with you over the next few weeks.
Have a friend who was just pregnant? Talk to them about maternity clothes. Maybe they’ll let you borrow some shirts.
You don’t have to have every cool thing they make for babies. I’d splurge on a cradle swing even before a crib.
Talk to friends and neighbors who are all done having kids – esp if they just had their last kid. They’re dying to get rid of their old stuff. Check for safety issues.
Make sure your car seat is less than 3 yrs old.
Don’t pay any medical bill that hasn’t been through your insurance. I overpaid the doctor’s office because they insisted on a certain amount that *they* expected. It took a WHOLE YEAR to get my refund check.”
– from Heart Baby Home
“This may sound silly to you but I just had a baby and this my personal experience. With my first, I craved taco bell like no tomorrow. And I ate it all the time. And whatever else I craved. With the baby I just had I craved pizza all the time. Instead of ordering out for it, we did homemade pizza and almost always had some in the fridge. When I was hungry but didn’t know what I wanted I would eat cereal. I had a ton in my stockpile and after awhile that’s what I craved. Those two things helped me save money on my cravings while pregnant!”
– from Fabulessly Frugal
“Always try the cheaper brands first. My babies all did fine with the off brand diapers and I saved nearly $10 on a big box (buy the big box) each time. This is the same for wipes, food, bottles, etc.
Breastfeeding isn’t for everyone, but if you can, it’s the way to go. There are so many benefits for mom and baby, but it is a big money saver. Formula is about $22 a box and will probably get you through a week. Do that for a year and then move into sippy cups when baby can have cow’s milk.
Also, get items that grow with the baby: a crib that turns into a twin bed, a car seat that grows with baby,
And, don’t buy what the baby doesn’t absolutely need. Unless the baby really needs it, don’t introduce the pacifier, or the bottle, etc. Once you buy one of those, you will buy 40!
Our baby started eating the same things we were eating as soon as he could have solid foods. A $6 mini food processor makes your meal edible for the baby. Since we get vegetables from the garden and meat from the farm, we know the baby isn’t getting overly-processed foods either.”
– from Keeping Up with the Joneses
“These are all great ideas. “Don’t buy what you don’t need”…I agree. I never had a changing table and I never missed out. I know several of my friends that said that was a useless item. If you feel you must have one buy one that grows with them like Kimberly said. In this case get a dresser with a changing pad on top.
I would not forget about thrift stores and yard sales too. You can find really awesome clothes for you and your baby all up until they are about 3-4 years old. Most people have too much stuff for their baby that is never used or maybe used only once and that includes clothes, and bedding.”
– from Saving Your Green
“And all you need is sleepers and onesies for the first few months. Nothing fancy, nothing expensive.
Somewhere for them to sleep, if even a pack&play next to your bed or cradle/basinet/baby moses basket for first couple of months too.”
– from 3 Boys and Adoption ?!?
I would love to hear all of your Frugal Pregnancy tips as well. Share them with me in the comment section!
I’m not pregnant, but this list was interesting 🙂 Parents buy so much stuff for babies, and I wonder who it’s really for haha
Here in Mexico, most parents don’t even buy cribs. They use hammocks!! It keeps the baby from getting too hot, and I would bet it’s safer than a crib, too. (Not just any outdoor hammock, I mean the indoor Mexican ones haha)
Whenever Jorge and I have kids, I have a feeling we will never have to buy clothes… family is sure to take care of that! His family LOVES to buy stuff for the babies in the family.
Both of us have lots of seamstresses in our families, as well 🙂
One of the best things we did while pregnant was get some things second hand and refinish them. The only things that were brand new were things that I didn’t think should be resused and things that were given to us from the baby shower.
Things we refinished:
Changing table that we found second hand at a resale shop. We painted it and then hot glued polka dots onto it.
Dresser: We used the same paint from the changing table and also found some cute wooden monkey’s at Hobby Lobby that we put on the front. Then we stenciled really big polka dots onto the sides.
Small wicker dresser for sheets and blankets: We somehow found this at a resale shop for five dollars and the colors matched perfectly.
We bought a brand new crib because I had a specific one in mind but I refused to pay more than 200 dollars. I found a great one at overstock.com and got free shipping on it. This one also converts to a toddler bed and then to a full sized.
We also tried the cloth diapering route but it unfortunately was not for us, After a two day trial he had such a bad diaper rash that we went back to Pampers.
All of our fancy things we got mainly came from the baby shower. We ended up returning stuff that we couldn’t use for gift cards and just now at seven months in are we purchasing formula and diapers with our own money. But having those giftcards was such a lifesaver and gave us time to build up a budget for formula.
I didn’t buy much for my daughter. I used hand-me-downs my sister’s had for their kids. At that point I was happy my mom has hoarding tendencies!
Instead of buying a bassinet, which I knew my 8+ pound baby would rapidly outgrow AND I didn’t have space for, I used a LAUNDRY BASKET with a pillow in the bottom and a fleece blanket on that. My sister gave me her crib that has 3 little shelves and 3 small drawers attached to it.
I also was able to take advantage of the WIC program and use my fiancee’s discount at Wal-Mart.
I would make her outfits for special occasions and all the baby shoes she had were gifts. I didn’t buy her fussy pair until she was about 10 months old and got them on clearance for $6.
I LOVE CLEARANCES for anything at all.
That laundry basket idea is total genius. A friend of mine did that with twins, because they were so teeny. We borrowed a friend’s bassinet for both kids.
All these tips are great. I second the notion of buying second hand clothes. They get outgrown so quickly! If you have no-one to give/lend them to you, scour second hand shops and sales. It’s easier with a bump than with baby in tow! I bought mostly gender neutral stuff so it can be used again if we have another baby.