We love our kids, but they can cause some major trouble with the budget. Let’s have a look at some of the biggest kid expenses and find some ways that you can start saving money on them right away.
If you have a kid in the diaper age range, you understand just how big of an expense this is, and it never seems like it is going to end. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and one day your kid will be out of diapers. Until then, why not save a little money.
The problem with trying to save money on diapers is that cheap diapers are awful. Most store brands are terrible at fluid control and using them will likely lead to frustration and a bunch of ruined outfits. Skip the cheap diapers and save money in other ways.
One way to save is to ask for samples. Diapers are a big business and companies are constantly looking to gain a larger share of the market. To do this, they will provide samples to doctors and often direct to consumers. On your next doctor appointment, be sure to ask for them, not all clinics are good at handing them out. In addition, sign up for manufacturer email lists and send them direct requests for samples. You might just be surprised at what you get back.
Another option is to network with other moms. As kids grow, many parents find themselves sitting on piles of diapers that are too small. Be there to scoop them up and save.
Every parent knows that kids are non stop snackers. They will eat you out of house and home, especially if you invest in single serving snacks like fruit chews and chips.
Save money on all those little snacks by purchasing them in bulk and then repackaging them. By doing so, you can cut that snack budget nearly in half.
If you simply must have the single serving snacks for convenience, shop for them at savings clubs like Sam’s, BJ’s or Costco. The small price of a membership is more than worth the savings. Most larger families will recoup the membership money in the first month and there are other perks to memberships. These include things like vacation, tire an even new car purchase discounts.
Cheap clothing is almost as bad as cheap diapers because it just does not last. Sure, they will outgrow it in short order, but cheap clothing often does not outlast the growth cycle.
Instead of buying cheap clothes, buy good clothes cheap. The way to do this is by shopping off season. During the Winter, by your Summer clothes. In the Spring, stock up on your heavy coats. Take advantage of clearance sales and save as much as 90 percent on your clothing costs.
Buying clothing the season ahead can save you a fortune and only comes with minimal risks. Yes, your child might have a surprise growth spurt, but most parents have a good idea of what size their children will be in just a few seasons.
Entertainment is another kid expense that can get out of hand easily, but it does not have to. Kids will do just about anything and they will do so without consideration of cost. This means that you should be slipping in the cheap entertainment options over the pricier choices.
As far as television goes, streaming services are the answer. Why pay over 100 dollars a month for a cable bill when you can get Disney bundled with Hulu for well under 20 bucks?
Cheap entertainment doesn’t stop there though. There are a number of cheap options like city and state parks or cheap memberships. Most zoos, for example. charge only slightly more for an annual pass than they do for daily entry. If you buy and use a membership enough, you can get your average entry price down to just a few dollars a visit.
Kids outgrow their toys almost as fast as they do their clothing, which is why it does not make sense to pay full retail.
Instead, do the same thing that you do for clothing, shop clearance sales. Pick your moments and you can get toys at considerable discounts. Shop Black Friday and after holiday clearance events and stock up on the goodies that your kid likes or that you know they soon be into. This necessitates some forethought and requires some discipline in order to avoid giving your kids their toys early. Buy them and immediately put them up in storage, where your kids can not find them.
For those toys that you need now or that do not go on clearance often, shop the used toy stores. Chances are that your kid will never notice the difference between a slightly loved toy and a new one. Besides, you know that new toys will look and feel the same after only a few days of hard kid use.