The arrival of a new baby is a joyous and happy affair, however few first-time parents are able to truly appreciate the high costs associated with childcare. To start off, new parents need to find extra money for nappies, formula, clothing, medical costs, childcare costs, etc. These goes beyond all the additional extras needed for baby, such as prams, cots, highchairs – and the list goes on. There are many ways in which parents can save money and still provide the best care for their bundle of joy.
There are a lot of good second-hand baby-accessory and nursery furniture shops in South Africa. The stores that specialise in the sale of second-hand baby goods and accessories ensure that all items are sterilised and thoroughly cleaned, which means that the buyer receives goods which are virtually as good as new. Rather than going out and purchasing all new nursery furniture, visit any of the second-hand baby furniture stores and instead of paying thousands for the latest, brand new pram, spend a lot less and use the saved cash for other necessary expenses.
Help other newbie parents by offering to babysit their children, in exchange for free babysitting services when needed. A paid babysitter can be a costly expense but when babysitting is shared among friends or family – parents are assured of the fact that their baby is in good hands, and there is no charge.
Cut back on non-essentials
In the days before baby’s arrival, couples were probably able to enjoy a night out at least every week. With baby, dining out or watching the latest movie on the big screen may be restricted. However there are ways to get around this, rather than going out, invite friends over for a dinner party or spend an evening in enjoying each other’s company, and watching the latest DVDs. Home entertaining is a lot less expensive than going out for a meal, and what’s more parents will not need to find babysitters.
Get rid of debt
Soon-to-be moms who are working up until the birth of their baby, need to seriously review their debt. Before going on maternity leave, try and pay off as much debt as possible. With reduced debt, the first-time mom will not feel that she is forced to go back to work, and will be allowed a little more time to make the right decision in terms of childcare.
If possible, the moment parents find out about the pregnancy, they should try to set up a savings account. The money saved will be useful after the birth of the baby, to assist paying medical bills, or used to decorate the nursery, or it can be used as a start savings account for future education costs.
The best money saving tip for first-time parents is to save for a rainy day and not to let financial stress put a damper on enjoying the first few months of parenthood.
– For budgeting and baby costs, use Calora’s tool: www.calorababy.co.za/baby-costs-calculator
– Kathy Baron