It’s no secret that becoming a parent can be expensive business, even with help from those excited family members and friends.
Babies grow quickly, so those expensive baby clothes will soon be too small, plus pushchairs, car seats and nappies are all expenses that add up. So what can you do to ensure you have the funds to keep your new bundle of joy healthy and happy?
Firstly check if you are eligible for funding from the Government – head to www.moneyadviceservice.co.uk for lots of information on the matter and details how you can receive helpful vouchers for fresh milk, fruit and vegetables, infant formula and vitamins if you are on benefits or under the age of 18 and pregnant.
If you are on a low income or on benefits then you could also receive a one off £500 payment (with no tax and that you don’t need to pay back) to use for baby clothes and other necessary items which will ensure your little one has the best start in life.
When it comes to raising a child your needs will take a step back. Of course, this doesn’t apply to eating and basic requirements like utilities but you should curb any unnecessary expenses such as eating out, buying new clothes unless necessary or any entertainment items. You can treat yourself every so often but be sensible about it.
If you and your partner only buy branded items when you shop it’s time to opt for the supermarkets cheaper alternatives which don’t taste that much different and cost significantly less.
You should also take advantage of ‘fat times’. These are the months where nothing goes wrong with the house or car, you receive a bonus or pay rise or have a little extra in the bank account at the end of the month. Put this money away instead of saving it, you’ll thank yourself later when your baby needs a new pram or a bigger bed.
Don’t let pride come into play when it comes to getting your hands on baby clothes, if someone is offering a second hand baby grow take it. If a friend has a pack of nappies left over from their child that has been opened then take it.
If you know someone giving away some outdoor play sets or a bike that’s been barely used grab them, they can be wrapped up as presents once your child is a little older. Children grow out of clothes so quickly and toys can be broken within days so if you can get these items for free you’ll be saving hundreds of pounds.
Making your baby’s food from scratch at home instead of buying jars from the supermarket can save you money and provide health benefits for your child. Branded baby food has been found to contain a considerably high amount of sugar and a lower quantity of vitamins, such as iron.
Puree vegetables and rice together for yummy combinations, once you begin weaning your baby off breast milk or formula. Mashed potato and carrots, sweet potato and squash or parsnips and carrots are winning combinations and easy to prepare and make at home. If you need inspiration – and more detailed instructions -then take a look at this great baby food recipe site and get cooking!
So when it comes to finance and babies there are plenty of ways you can save money, keep your little one healthy and happy and still find a little spare cash for yourself at the end of the day.