I have not always been good with money, in fact I used to be borderline terrible. When I was at university I would usually spend my entire loan in the first two weeks of term and then live on plain spaghetti and bites of my friends food for the rest of the month. I still don’t know if I would necessarily describe myself as ‘good’ with money but I have come a long way from where I used to be.
Do your food shopping online
This is probably the main way that we save money each month. Doing your food shopping online removes a lot of the temptation for impulse purchases and the running total of your shopping basket keeps you from not going over budget. I either do one or two big food shops a month of cupboard foods and meat to put in the freezer, I then will do top up shops of fresh foods like vegetables, bread and milk throughout the month.
I know not everyone can do this and there are some people that don’t want to, but we save so much money from not needing to buy formula. That’s as well as the amazing health benefits of course!
Don’t be a brand snob
I get that you want the best for your baby but there are so many good duplicates out there which mean you can save on certain things. When we first started baby shopping we were sucked into paying top prices for things that I now know you can find for a fraction of the price. GroBags were a big one for us, we bought three different tog bags each at £30, we had no idea which we would need and it turned out in the end she hated using them full stop. She only just came around to the idea of using them and she outgrew them. So I went out looking for the next size, only to find the exact same thing in Sainsbury’s for £12! There are so many more examples of this, I think I will do a whole blog post on it.
Find supermarket nappies and wipes you like
We’ve tried pretty much every brand of nappies and wipes out there and have settled on Asda’s Little Angels. The nappies are on the same level as Pampers as far as I’m concerned and the wipes are the best I’ve tried. Even if you are savvy and wait for special offers and discount codes, Pampers still works out at least double the price so it’s a no brainer for me. I would much rather save that money for our house or a holiday than waste it on nappies! I guarantee there will be at least one supermarket brand that works for you. The other one that goes with this is nappy disposal bags, buy the cheapest you can possibly find, there is no point wasting money on something that’s sole purpose is to go in the bin.
Try to Save on Baby Wipes
When we first started weaning Darcie I noticed we were having to buy so many more baby wipes than usual due to having to clean her off after each meal. I’ve started to use a damp flannel instead, it’s actually much easier to clean her this way and it is saving us money too.
Do baby led weaning or make your own baby food
We do baby led weaning which means that Darcie basically eats the same foods that we were already buying for ourselves. Sure, there are some things we now need to buy more of but at least we aren’t shelling out for jars and packets of food for her. If you are going down the puree route, then look up some recipes online or just blend up whatever you are eating yourself, you’ll save a fortune!
I don’t have access to the car during the week so my options are to get on the bus or to walk. I do get on the bus sometimes for longer journeys and also because Darcie loves it, but generally I will just walk places. I’ve found local activities for us to do rather than having to travel too far which let’s face it makes life easier with a baby anyway. You’ll get a ton of exercise pushing the pram around or wearing your baby in a baby carrier which is a great way of trying to lose that baby weight too.
They are my main bits of advice for anyone trying to save money. Having a baby doesn’t need to cost the earth, these tips are partly the reason that I have been able to take a full year of Maternity Leave and for us to live off of one income.