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creditspring money saving guide for new parents
creditspring money saving guide for new parents

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Creditspring's money-saving guide for new parents

Becoming a parent for the first time is exciting, magical, unforgettable, and in some cases, a bit stressful. Babies are expensive, and it’s easy to throw budgets out of the window when it comes to raising them.
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We put together a quick money-saving guide for new parents, helping you to spend a little less time worrying about cash, and a little more time being Mum or Dad.

Here are 10 money-saving tips that you can use to get more out of your money as a new parent.

1. Budgeting

The list of things babies need is endless. 

You will need money for things such as:

  • Nappies

  • Food

  • Bottles

  • Clothes

  • Toys

  • Chairs

  • Babysitters

Budgets are obvious, but they’re the first thing people recommend for a reason. Set yourself a target for the month, and then break it down into categories. If you find yourself spending way more on baby clothes than you should, then that’s the first place you should try to save some cash.

Budgeting is hard, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you struggle to get things right in the beginning. The most important thing to do is to keep trying to stick to your budget, even if you fail a couple of times. You might even find you were too ambitious, and things cost more than you thought.

2. Make sure you’re getting paid fairly

Make sure that you’re up to speed with maternity and paternity pay. Most new parents are entitled to it, but it typically depends on how long you’ve been working with your current employer. New mums should get 90% of their earnings for the first six weeks. According to the Money Advice service, you’re entitled to £145.18 per week, or 90% of your earnings (whichever is less) for the following 33 weeks.

3. Working families tax credit

Also, check out the working families tax credit. Some families could get up to £1,960 in tax credit per year, depending on the hours they work and how much they earn.

4. Be practical

No matter how much you earn, or how big your budget is, you can easily spend it all on the newest addition to your family. It’s often said that baby clothes are one of the fastest ways to exhaust a baby budget. Buy baby clothes as and when they’re needed, and when you do, get them with growing room. If it’s your first child, the temptation to buy things “just in case” can be enormous, and often results in a wardrobe full of things that never got used.

5. Check what you need

If you’re expecting, the NHS has a great list of what you’ll need before the baby arrives. It’s also a perfect place to start if you’re looking to buy a gift for people who have just welcomed new life into the world.

Another good tip is to invest, not indulge, in the basics. Things like vest tops, bibs and pyjamas are vital but don’t get carried away with fancy brands or fun designs. The main thing to look for is quality i.e does it wash well and won't fall apart after a couple of trips around the washing machine? If you set out with the goal of finding clothes that are an investment for your little one, not an indulgence, you could save hundreds.

6. Make the most of the freebies

Find freebies and giveaways where you can, and remember that as a new parent, you’re one of the most desirable consumers in the universe. Companies far and wide want to find a way to help themselves to your hard-earned cash, and they’ll try every trick in the book to do so. You can play that to your advantage, however, as free samples are often quite easy to come by when it comes to babies.

7. Join events

Mothercare often runs ‘expectant parent events‘ with samples and freebies galore, but parents to newborns are more than welcome to go too. Cow & Gate has a baby club with regular freebies, and often local nurseries and mum groups get sent free samples to enjoy.

Be sure to check on Facebook if there’s a parent group in your area. It’s a super way to learn about what’s going on in the community, and it’s usually the first way people try giving away things that their baby outgrew.

8. Free dental treatments

One of the best freebies that motherhood (sorry dads) entitles you to is a year’s free dental care on the NHS. You’ll need to apply for a maternity exemption certificate, but it’s well worth going for and you won’t pay a penny.

9. Second-hand makes sense

When it comes to our children, everybody wants the best. A lot of the time, that can be had for next to nothing thanks to fellow mums and dads! Little ones don’t stay little for very long, so the hundreds of pounds that gets spent on high chairs, car seats, strollers, cots and countless other things can quickly go to waste. Websites like Freecycle and Freegle are a great place to start. Most ads cost nothing to put up, so it’s full of brilliant baby gear that’s being given away for free to try and reclaim precious space in the house. Gumtree is another popular option too.

10. Find a baby bank

Food banks are held across the UK, but there are also specific banks known as ‘baby banks’ which provide specific good-quality baby clothes and equipment, which have been donated by local individuals or sometimes businesses. These are to help parents with babies and children on low income, so if you’re struggling to make ends meet, this may be a great option for you.

You can check out Little Village if you are based in London, but there are over 200 baby banks across the UK. They often provide packs of essentials, such as nappies, wipes and clothes.

Most of all: think ahead

Having a baby is hard work, and raising one is even harder. The most important tip of all is to think ahead and try not to leave everything to the last minute. Ask yourself if there’s ways to get things for cheaper, or a way to get more for less. Best of all, ask yourself if you even need it in the first place! 

So long as you pay attention to your pennies and your pounds, do your best to make the most of your cash, and spend a little time hunting for the best deal, you’ll do just fine.

And for those emergencies or unexpected expenses, Creditspring is always an option. You won’t need to worry about high-interest loans either – we have transparent and manageable fees, demonstrated by our 4.8-star rating on Trustpilot.  

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