It’s no secret; babies are expensive. But, worry not, as money saving expert Megan Fife at Ashleigh Money Saver is here to help new parents make their money go further.
We won’t beat around the bush, although becoming a new parent is a wonderful and exciting time, it can also be somewhat stressful. Not only are you busy adjusting to life with a new baby in tow, you’re tired from sleepless nights, you’re routine has gone out the window and suddenly there’s all manner of new gadgets and gizmos you’ve never heard of, but absolutely need to have.
A new baby can also be a strain on your finances. From travel systems to baby rockers, you’ll want the best for your bundle of joy. But the best doesn’t always come cheap. Planning ahead can help you prepare for a number of those new parent outgoings, however, just like an all-inclusive holiday ‘bargain’, there are always unexpected costs.
Thankfully, money saving expert Megan Fife from Ashleigh Money Saver has created a New Parents Survival Guide, offering up tips and tricks to help new mums and dads take stock of their spending.
If you don’t need it, don’t buy it
With a new baby on the way, it’s easy to turn into an excitable parent, diving into every baby shop you come across and stocking up on all the latest ‘must haves’.
Megan explains you don’t need it all: “Most of those items such as a baby bath thermometer, baby food maker and bottle warmer are actually items which cost a lot and aren’t needed.
“Now if you’re a first time parent, it’s understandable that you want all the right stuff for your baby’s arrival but instead of wasting your money on unnecessary gadgets, have a chat with friends who already have kids to get an idea about what items are really needed and what items are just a novelty.”
You’ll soon realise babies grow very quickly. Before you know it, your once teeny-tiny newborn will have transformed into a fully-fledged walking, talking mini person. Suddenly those adorable newborn sleepsuits are of little use. When buying clothes for your new baby, instead of going overboard on clothes that will fit them now, buy one size up. (This doesn’t mean you can’t splash out on super cute baby clothes every now and then.)
“By buying one size too big not only will the clothes last much longer, but you’ll save a load of money in the process,” Megan adds. “Plus, once your baby has outgrown them, sell them on eBay to recoup some of your costs and to spend on the next size up.”
Don’t overpay on nappies
Megan explains, “In the run-up to the birth, one of the things parents forget to stock up on is nappies. It’s not a huge problem as you can buy nappies in most supermarkets and online. The thing is, it’s okay just popping to the shop when you’re running low you’ll likely be paying over the odds for the convenience.
“With the price of nappies fluctuating from shop to shop (whichever brand you go for), you’re going to be hard pushed to get the best price. You can look out for special offers or even buy in bulk.”
Join baby clubs
Having a baby isn’t cheap so anything you can get for free should be snapped up with both hands. That’s where baby clubs come in.
There are currently loads of baby clubs in the UK you can sign up to (completely free) and once they have your details, you will be sent a number of freebies which include sample products, useful magazines and money off coupons for a wealth of products and brands.
Check your benefit entitlement
Although the government has made numerous cuts to a range of benefits, there is still help and you should definitely check to see if you are entitled to any of them.
If you live in Northern Ireland out Citizens Information which will run through your circumstances and will work out what benefits you can claim. You could be entitled to benefits from Child Benefit to One-Parent Family Payment.
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