According to a 2010 report created by the United States Food and Drug Administration, USDA, the average middle class family will spend around $12,000 on their baby for the first year of their life. If you're a new parent, chances are you're looking for every way possible to save money. The baby's nursery will be one of your biggest expenses, so naturally, this is the best place to begin cutting costs. Here are a few tips to help you create a safe and stylish nursery for less:
Utilize Items from Your Past
Before you blow your budget on new decorative items for your baby's nursery, ask your parents if they have anything left from your childhood. For example, if your parent's kept your teddy bear or blanket, utilize these pieces as a focal point in the room. You can use the colors found on these pieces to draw inspiration for the paint and accent hues, which will help highlight your old baby toys and accessories.
Mixing old photos of you as a baby and your parent when they were younger with new pictures of your baby and spouse or partner is another great way to make your space unique without breaking the budget.
If you don't have enough of your old baby stuff to complete your vision for the space, go ahead and purchase a few new items. Just remember to set a budget and stick to the theme and colors of your room design
Your baby will grow very quickly during that first year, which is why purchasing the majority of their clothing secondhand just makes financial sense. However, when it comes to your baby's furniture and other needs, it is important to know what items you should always buy new. Here are a few baby must-haves you should always buy new:
- Crib – Your baby will be spending a lot of time in their crib, and you need to make sure you purchase a model that is safe and secure. This is why it is vital you never purchase a used crib. Remember, you never know how many times that crib has been moved or reassembled, both of which can wear out the screw holes, which could render the unit unstable. This is why it's best to buy new from a furniture store.
- Mattress – Babies spit up, pee and poop a lot, and this includes on their crib mattress. A used mattress will be contaminated with the bodily fluids of the baby that used it.
- Car seat – As a first-time parent, you may not realize car seats come equipped with expiration dates. This is because car seat technology is constantly evolving, and a brand new seat will feature the latest upgrades.
However, when it comes to everything else, including any other furniture and decorative items, purchasing them used can save you big money.
Choose Multipurpose Pieces
Finally, one of the best ways to save big money is to purchase baby items that serve more than one purpose, or can be used throughout several stages of your baby's life. For example, choose a combination changing table and dresser. There are also several high chairs and baby swings that can be used for several years. They might be a little pricier in the outset, but you'll save money over the years when you don't have to purchase several new items as your baby grows.
The first year of your new baby's life will be exhilarating, and very expensive. However, with a little creativity and know-how, it is possible to decorate the baby's room and meet all their needs without breaking the bank.