Having a baby can instantly light up any household. These bundles of joy add laughter and excitement to families, and there are certainly no dull moments with babies around. But at the same time, you have to accept the reality that having one in Singapore is NEVER cheap. Plus, the expenses continue for years – from the time your little one is born, and even up to his or her college years. So, you have to be prepared financially to make sure your budget works perfectly if you have plans of having kids.
Get a good start with your expenses and finances by knowing the essentials and not overspending on some baby items that are not worth blowing up your budget on. The following are some tips on how to be more frugal when it comes to buying baby items that are not as important as others.
1. Baby Formula Milk
No matter what brand of formula you find on the store, you will be shocked to find high price tags on these. This can truly stretch your budget, as the running bill for formula milk is about $1,500 a year. Always remember that there are other things you need to spend on aside from milk, and the stress level can go way up if you keep buying expensive formula for your child.
So how can you restrict your budget on milk without starving your little one? The answer is simple – breastfeed your baby. If this option is possible for your situation, breastfeeding can surely save you thousands of dollars a year. To make it even better, this is a healthier alternative to formula since breastmilk contains essential nutrients that your child needs. Breastfeeding can also increase the bond between you and your baby, which is important in every mother and child.
If you are a working mom, all you need is a breast pump to collect milk and store it in the fridge until the time your baby has to be fed. Instead of buying a brand new pump, you may want to borrow from your friends or family members. Naturally, you will need to change and get a replacement for the plastic attachments since it is not hygienic to use an old one. This should be an economical route to feeding your baby instead of buying a new pump for sure.
2. Diaper Changing Table
Do you think it is an absolute necessity to spend $300 on a changing table? Come on, this is merely a simple piece of furniture for changing the diaper, which can even add bulk to a small space, if ever you are renting a cramped apartment. But for the most part, allotting hundreds of dollars for this item is almost ludicrous when you can simply use the bed or even your long dresser for changing the diaper.
Save yourself from the massive expenses of buying a pricey or even a mid-priced changing table by going for a more practical option. If you choose to use the couch, bed, or a dresser for a diaper-changing spot, just make sure you place a soft pad, mat, or blanket on the hard surface. This way, your baby won’t feel uncomfortable while having his or her diapers changed.
Of course, this is an essential thing that every baby needs. But at the same time, you have to be aware of the fact that babies grow at a very fast rate. The next thing you know, those overalls or onesies that you got your baby last month can barely fit him or her now. If you had spent a lot of money on that, then it’s definitely not practical since those tight baby clothes will now just be stored in the closet for your future babies, or perhaps donated to charity.
Be more frugal and practical by asking your family members and friends for baby clothes that their older children have outgrown. Not only are you saving money by going towards this route, but you are also helping others de-clutter their closet by loaning these clothes to you for your baby’s needs.
4. Decor for the Nursery
As with any excited new parent, you are probably eager to decorate your baby’s new room and make it the best-looking nursery as possible. But at the same time, do you really need to spend hundreds of dollars for the decor? Buying pricey wall decals and wallpaper and what-nots can only cause you so much stress in the long run if your money ends up going to these not-so-important items.
A frugal way to design the nursery may mean being more resourceful and creative. For instance, you should easily find attractive frames and decor from IKEA for under $5. You can even check out the internet for stencils and decorative pieces that you can print out and stick on the walls of the nursery. It is a matter of exploring on your creativity and being practical along the way.
5. High-Cost Feeding Chair
Once your child start to eat solids, you will need a high chair or feeding chair to make sure he or she gets to eat comfortably in a secure seat. However, is it really worth buying one with designer covers, chic padding, and a very high price tag to top it all off? Every practical parent will say “no”, and it only makes sense that you choose a cheaper alternative without compromising the safety of your little one.
Just think of it this way – babies have zero table manners at all. You can just expect them to splatter food and smear everything on various surfaces including the gorgeous cover of the chair’s seat. So at the end of every feeding session, the fabric will only end up getting soiled with food and stains. This is why you may want to opt for a feeding chair that is easier to clean without frills and fuss. As long as the chair has sturdy legs, safety straps or harnesses, as well as a removable tray for easy cleaning, this is basically all you need for your child’s feeding times.
6. Baby Walkers
A quick trip to the store will greet your with flashy and fancy baby walker of all shapes, sizes, and features. There are blinking lights, kiddie songs playing, and plenty of things to keep your little bub preoccupied as he or she tres to move the walker along with every step. But is this item really necessary?
The truth is that once your child is ready, he or she will walk – with or without a walker’s help. It all depends on your little one’s physical development and motor skills. So, there is no point in forcing a child to walk if there is no readiness evident. Save yourself from the unnecessary expense of getting a walker and use your money instead on essential and basic needs.
7. Cot Bedding
Must you really buy those expensive and designer cot bedding? Quite frankly, too much bedding in the hammock, cot, or bassinet can be a risk to babies. Sure, the cot will get that gorgeous and picture-perfect appearance, as though it came from a cover of the magazine. But then again, having a lot of these can be dangerous. There is the increased chances of SIDS among babies because of these soft and thick bedding.
Give yourself some peace of mind each time your baby sleeps and use a simple cotton sheet (fitted) as your baby’s bedding. This is all that your little one will need, and be sure to keep the fan in a direction away from the bedding to prevent it from blowing to your child’s face while sleeping.
Every parent wants only the best for their little ones. However, it is also important to know which item deserves a bigger budget, as well as those that are otherwise unnecessary. By being aware of these things, you can keep track of your finances and know exactly where your money goes without having any regret along the way. However, if parent who in need of extra cash to pay for any emergency bills due to over spending on that month, another faster alternative is to borrow cash advance from licensed money lender.