Check out these top tips for saving money and spending wisely when you’re shopping for a new baby – all from parents who’ve been through it and know exactly where the savings can be made.
- Ask around
- Think before you buy
- Buy second hand
- Shop around
- Consider reusable nappies
- Borrow stuff
- Don’t stockpile
- Make the most of freebies
- Don’t go baby clothes shopping
- Re-sell anything you don’t need
“When you’re pregnant you feel like you want to buy everything. I did, but ended up not using half of it. Like the Moses basket, the baby bath and all the cute newborn outfits. Now I wish I’d saved my money and just bought a bagful of muslin squares and a few plain babygrows.” – Gina
- See what other parents are saying on the community pages of Babycentre UK
- Discover the 10 least useful baby items on Which?
Think before you buy
Did you know?
Some new parents spend over £10,000 (including childcare) in their baby’s first year, but lots of us do it for much less.
“Before you buy something big and expensive, think really carefully about how you’d use it.
I spent £600 on a travel system that was too bulky for the boot of my car and too awkward to get on the bus.
I ended up using it twice, then getting a cheap buggy instead.” – Marcia
Buy second hand
“Get as much as you can second hand. I got a nearly-new play gym in my local charity shop for £8 and saw the same one later in the shops for £50. I also got a pram on eBay for a third of the retail price.” – Annika
- Find out if there’s a National Childbirth Trust (NCT) nearly new sale in your area
- Check local boards such as Netmums for second-hand stuff
- Look out for local second-hand bargains on Ebay or Gumtree
- Find your local Freecycle group and look out for baby things being given away
“If you do buy anything new don’t ever pay the full price – you don’t need to. Shop in the sales – there’s always a sale on somewhere. Also don’t think you have to get everything in high-street baby shops. There’s loads of baby stuff you can get cheaper in the supermarkets and on websites.” – Jon
Price comparison website Bumdeal says you could save as much as £11 a week on nappies by shopping around online.
Consider reusable nappies
Parents in England and Wales spend roughly half a billion a year on disposable nappies, but could save upwards of £150 by using reusable nappies, according to estimates by real nappy information service Go Real.
Reusable nappies are not for everybody and some like to use a mixture of reusable and disposable, which has an impact on cost savings.
Your local council might even have a ‘real nappy’ incentive in the form of cashback, free samples or vouchers.
“Don’t be afraid to ask family and friends if they’ve got any spare baby things you can borrow. You can always give it back to them if they ever need it again. Most of the people I asked were happy to see their stuff being put to good use.” – Alicia
“Don’t bother stockpiling anything, not even nappies or wipes, because you don’t know what you’re going to need. I bought loads of nappies only to find that I preferred a different brand. It’s better just to buy enough for the first few days and start putting away some money each week instead.” – Katya
Make the most of freebies
“Join all the baby clubs you can – the supermarkets all have them and the baby food and nappy companies too. You get free samples and vouchers from them all.” – Beth
Don’t go baby clothes shopping
“Don’t buy lots of baby clothes. You only need to get one set of vests, sleep suits, etc in newborn size. The baby will grow out of them so quickly. And people are very generous when you have a baby. Everyone seems to love buying baby clothes.” – Leona
Re-sell anything you don’t need
“If you’re buying baby equipment, hang on to the boxes if you’ve got the space. Also, don’t take the labels off new baby clothes until you use them (you’ll be surprised how many tiny outfits don’t get worn). These will mean you can get a better price when you sell them on. But make sure you really won’t need them again. You don’t want to buy it all again if you have another baby.” – Louise
This article is provided by the Money Advice Service.