As soon as you found out you were pregnant you probably started thinking about the need to budget, at the same time as dreaming of all the baby clothes and equipment you wanted to buy! Babies don’t have to break the bank though. Today we have a post from Becky Goddard-Hill, author of the baby budgeting book ‘How to Afford Time off with your Baby’, with some tips to help you enjoy your pregnancy without splashing your cash.
Don’t spend a fortune on baby names books, week by week pregnancy books or everything you need to know about childbirth books. Undoubtedly mummy friends will have a stack of these to lend as will your local library, who for a small fee can request them in if they don’t have them.
It is a good idea to write a really clear wish list so when you are asked what you would like you as a baby gift can point people in the right direction and get the nightlights, sunshades, nappy bags and changing mats that you want and need (and which co-ordinate!) If you don’t speak up it is virtually guaranteed everyone will buy baby clothes. [Don't forget to ask someone to get you a Cuddledry apron towel! - Ed]
It’s not worth spending money on baby clothes at this point, you will be bought lots as gifts and you won’t have a clue what these will be. Hold on for the clothes you will be given and just get a small pack of 3 vests and sleepsuits from a supermarket as a starter set.
You could practice living on one wage now so the shock of reduced income is less when your baby comes and you will have some money set by. This doesn’t mean you have to be miserable…. lots of lovely times can be had on a budget. You don’t need a last trip to Paris or a pregnancy spa, instead try:
- Having a lazy bath with your best tunes + candles,
- Going for a gentle stroll in the country with good friends and a picnic
- Renting a movie and cuddle up under a blanket with some hot choc.
- Set the table with napkins, flowers form the garden and practically eat out whilst staying in. Even if it is pasta it will taste much better this way!
If you start budgeting and making smart, resourceful, creative choices now it will really help in the long run.
Check out the Baby Budgeting website for more tips and a regular blog on baby budgeting and more information on my book How to Afford Time off with your Baby by Becky Goddard-Hill (Vermilion, 2009). Available now from Amazon.