The average cost of raising a child in the United States to the age of 18 is more than $245,000. Presumably here in the UK, the price is probably around the same… maybe more if you have to fork out for childcare like we do! This is a staggering sum of money, but don’t despair because there are lots of things you can do to keep more of your money in your purse as a parent.
Try these simple tips for saving money as a parent and watch your savings grow!
Babies and young kids get through clothing so quickly that it is hardly worth purchasing new clothes at all. Places like eBay, Gumtree, and Facebook are great places to pick up bundles of kids’ clothes still in good condition, and by utilizing them, you can ensure your kids look great without having to spend a small fortune. We got a HUGE bag of clothes for Short Rib (that he still hasn’t grown out of) for £18.00 on Facebook. Wasn’t shabby stuff either… M&S and Next stuff mainly.
Buying used is also a great way to save on the initial expenses… prams, are a big one. We never bought a brand new one and we’ve save hundreds because of it.
Purchase Products That Will Grow with Them
When you have a baby, instead of buying, for example, a cot that will only last a couple of years, try to invest in a cot that will transition to a toddler bed when the time is right, then you will not have to make another purchase as your child goes.
Set Up a Swap Shop
If you get together with other parents in your neighbourhood, you can save money on everything from books and toys to shoes and clothing by setting up an informal swap shop, where you can trade in your children’s unwanted stuff for things they want, but their friends are looking to get rid of. Facebook Groups are probably already set up for stuff like this – so have a search and see what you can find!
Sign Up to Money Saving Sites
Websites like DontPayFull.com are great for shopping online. They are packed with coupons and voucher codes that can be used all over the internet, on a wide range of products, and they can result in huge savings of 60 percent or more at their best. If you’re in the UK, simply googling “voucher code” after your chosen retailer will usually bring up something and there’s a bunch of cashback sites available too. Before you buy anything online, you would be wise to check these sites first!
Free Entry Attractions
Most major towns and cities have at least a couple of free entry attractions which can be a godsend when it comes to entertaining the kids for less. Visiting museums, galleries, and even libraries, can give your children a great day out, encourage them to learn more about the world around them, and keep the pennies in your pocket where they belong. Also, check the back of receipts for 2-for-1 deals on a bunch of places!
Get the Kids Involved in Competitions
There are lots of great competitions around, which encourage children to use their creativity. Many of these competitions offer prizes including books, cash, toys and educational scholarships, so it is well worth seeking out these contests and encouraging your children to take part. Even if they don’t win, they’ll have spent time doing something fun and (probably) free.
There’s no getting around the fact that having kids will cost you money, but if you are sensible and you take note of the above tips, it might not be quite as expensive as expected.
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