When pregnancy occurs, many people go on a buying spree, often fueled by excitement, good intentions, and nerves. There are many products offered up to parents-to-be, but which ones are underused, over-priced, or completely unnecessary? Here’s a list of what we found to be essential purchases, well worth the money.
A Crib That Converts to Toddler Bed (and Bedding)
This product will serve from the first night at home until age three or four. Our crib worked great from day one and avoided the unnecessary expense of a bassinet.
It is often cheaper to purchase individual bedding items than to buy a complete set. Those complete sets often contain things you don’t need or want — but you’ll be paying for.
Stroller and Car Seat
Identify what are likely to be your needs when the baby joins you. Get a stroller that will lay flat, so it is suitable from birth and has a high maximum weight capacity for longevity. If you are really going to run with the stroller or walk a lot, then consider getting a running stroller. Having said that, we walk over 30 miles a week and have done so for over seven months (on a 16 month old stroller). That stroller was part of a basic travel system. The seat and stroller cost $130 delivered (2012). Most people do not need or use the features on their premium brand strollers. Also, many premium brands charge for extras like trays, etc. where basic models come with those gizmos.
Infant car seats will only last you about a year. Never compromise on safety, but does the child need a super-flash seat? — Hint, the kid won’t care what they’re in.
A changing table will save your back, provide storage, and keep your floors and furniture sanitary. They are pretty cheap too.
You are likely to get inundated with fancy baby clothes, especially if you have a girl. Stick to basic, cotton, footed pajamas. They are much easier to get on and off and are usually cheap. Most clothes you receive as gifts are likely to be for age 0-3 months so buy clothes for after that.
Diapers and Wipes
Your baby is likely to grow out of diapers very fast. Do not buy large quantities of newborn and size one diapers. You will use more wipes than you think.
Don’t purchase any feeding apparatus or formula until you are certain if you’ll be going breast or bottle.
If you have the above essentials, you’ll be just fine when the baby comes home.
As always, use coupons, wait until the stores are offering special promotions to avoid paying full retail, alternatively some items are fine if they are second-hand. You may not need an infant bath if you have a suitable sink.