@ParentsMagazine

14 Surprising Ways to Save on Baby Stuff

3 Mar 2017 23:14

By: Andrea Stanley

1. Shop online—but not for everything How many times have you debated if getting out of your stretchy pants is worth a trip to the store, only to resort to loading up your online shopping cart instead? So easy. But not always a wallet-friendly way to shop. "I signed up for so many online retailers' mailing lists," says Deanna, a mom of three from New Haven, Connecticut. "I thought it would be a good way to save money because I'd be alerted to sales. But because so many of the clothing sites had minimums you needed to hit to get free shipping, I always spent more than what I intended, or there would be a deal I couldn't pass up and I'd end up with things I didn't really need." The solve: Limit shopping on the web to must-have items typically bought in bulk (diapers and formula) but not unnecessary things (toys and clothes), and stick to places that don't charge a service fee and offer free shipping. And if possible, set up the automatic re-order feature so you aren't tempted to click around and end up with a shipment full of stuff you end up regretting. 2. Get smart about buying diapers It's an expense you'll be shelling out for over the next few years, so have a game plan on how to get the best deals. Rule No. 1: Never buy diapers at full price—you can always get them on sale. To make sure you're spending as little as possible, compare prices from at least three places before buying, and always check the brand's site for coupons. Another money-saving trick: "I was never really loyal to one brand because I found numerous ones that worked just fine," says Tina, a mom of one from Miami, Florida. "So whatever one was on sale each month, that's what I'd buy." 3. Ask your pediatrician for samples If you're planning to bottle feed, the cost of formula probably has you feeling a major case of sticker shock. When you leave the hospital, stock up your diaper bag with as much formula as the nurses are willing to give you. Just be prepared to ask—most health care facilities won't offer it up unprompted. And don't be afraid to request freebies from your pediatrician, too. She can load you up with everything from formula to eczema cream. 4. Check to see if your employer offers any perks It's time for you or your partner to give HR a ring. Don't leave money on the table just because you weren't aware of programs that were available to you. "Depending on your income tax bracket, and your estimated child care cost, you might want to take advantage of any employer-provided Dependent Child Flexible Savings Accounts," Becker says. "That allows you to use pre-tax money to pay for child care." Side note: Even if you don't qualify for that type of program, or your employer doesn't offer it, talk to an accountant about taking advantage of ...
Read More


Category: magazine parents baby

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@ParentsMagazine

14 Surprising Ways to Save on Baby Stuff

3 Mar 2017 23:14

By: Andrea Stanley
1. Shop online—but not for everything How many times have you debated if getting out of your stretchy pants is worth a trip to the store, only to resort to loading up your online shopping cart instead? So easy. But not always a wallet-friendly way to shop. "I signed up for so many online retailers' mailing lists," says Deanna, a mom of three from New Haven, Connecticut. "I thought it would be a good way to save money because I'd be alerted to sales. But because so many of the clothing sites had minimums you needed to hit to get free shipping, I always spent more than what I intended, or there would be a deal I couldn't pass up and I'd end up with things I didn't really need." The solve: Limit shopping on the web to must-have items typically bought in bulk (diapers and formula) but not unnecessary things (toys and clothes), and stick to places that don't charge a service fee and offer free shipping. And if possible, set up the automatic re-order feature so you aren't tempted to click around and end up with a shipment full of stuff you end up regretting. 2. Get smart about buying diapers It's an expense you'll be shelling out for over the next few years, so have a game plan on how to get the best deals. Rule No. 1: Never buy diapers at full price—you can always get them on sale. To make sure you're spending as little as possible, compare prices from at least three places before buying, and always check the brand's site for coupons. Another money-saving trick: "I was never really loyal to one brand because I found numerous ones that worked just fine," says Tina, a mom of one from Miami, Florida. "So whatever one was on sale each month, that's what I'd buy." 3. Ask your pediatrician for samples If you're planning to bottle feed, the cost of formula probably has you feeling a major case of sticker shock. When you leave the hospital, stock up your diaper bag with as much formula as the nurses are willing to give you. Just be prepared to ask—most health care facilities won't offer it up unprompted. And don't be afraid to request freebies from your pediatrician, too. She can load you up with everything from formula to eczema cream. 4. Check to see if your employer offers any perks It's time for you or your partner to give HR a ring. Don't leave money on the table just because you weren't aware of programs that were available to you. "Depending on your income tax bracket, and your estimated child care cost, you might want to take advantage of any employer-provided Dependent Child Flexible Savings Accounts," Becker says. "That allows you to use pre-tax money to pay for child care." Side note: Even if you don't qualify for that type of program, or your employer doesn't offer it, talk to an accountant about taking advantage of ...
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