A baby will make love stronger, days shorter, nights longer, bankroll smaller, home happier, clothes shabbier, the past forgotten, and the future worth living for. – Anonymous
The average parent can easily spend between $2,000 to over $5,000 on a nursery for their newborn. What typically happens is that we have our first baby and go over the top by spending a lot of money on things that ultimately never get used. Then when the second baby comes, it’s hand-me-down-city where frugality, simplicity and plain ‘ol common sense kicks in.
Here are 5 tips to prepare your baby’s nursery on a budget and with some of that common sense you’ll soon acquire.
1. Keep The Room Safe
One thing we tend to forget is that our little ones are an endless bundle of curiosity. Their little hands fit into places that we’ve never thought of as parents, and their nursery can be full of dangerous little cracks, holes, edges and sockets.
It’s great to take hand-me-down changing tables, cribs and furniture, just make sure that they are tiny finger and footsie safe. Saving money is one thing, but please don’t sacrifice safety because of it.
If you’re building or adding shelves and bookcases, be sure to secure them to the wall so that they can support climbing kids. Have a dresser with some big drawers? See what happens when they are all open and a little bit of weight is inside them. If it flips, secure it!
2. Buy Pre-owned Baby and Nursery Gear
Your baby will be growing very fast and experience a tremendous amount of change during her first couple of years. Those toys, blankets, stuffed animals and books that amuse and never leave her grips as a 4 month old will likely become a relic by the time she hits 5 months.
Wherever possible, explore pre-owned baby and nursery items first. Not only will you save money, but you’ll also have a place to resell or swap those items for new ones once your child is no longer interested in or outgrows them.
3. Repurpose and Get Crafty
When we start thinking about our child’s nursery, we tend to focus on what it will look like, the color we’ll paint the walls, the fabrics, the shelves full of animals and books, etc. We then make a list of stuff we need to buy.
Instead, start by taking an inventory of things you already own that you could use in your nursery. Are there any old bookshelves that you could repurpose for a chic closet? Have some old toy animals that you could turn into fun storage with Mason jars?
If you are missing some key pieces of furniture, start with local garage sales and consignment shops before expensive new items.
4. Save on Baby Monitors
There are a ton of baby monitors out there that range from expensive to really expensive. Before you buy a new monitor, ask your friends if they have any old ones that they no longer use. Many parents often have old baby gear just stuffed in a box somewhere and would be happy to pawn it off on you.
Just don’t go overboard on monitors. You can always find affordable baby monitors on Swap.com as well as in many of your local consignment stores.
5. Consider the Lighting
Having the right nursery lighting can make a big difference between soothing sleep, or up all night. Having a lamp in the room with a very low wattage bulb can be helpful when checking in during the night without waking your sleeping baby.
Consider blackout curtains to not only keep the morning and afternoon sun at bay, but also to better control the temperature in the nursery so that your baby can rest more comfortably.