How to Budget for Pregnancy

Four Methods:Revise Your Household Budget and Prioritize ExpensesShop SmartCut Down on Food Expenses During the DayAsk for Help

Whether you’re already pregnant or just thinking about having a baby, this is a very exciting time in your life. There are many factors to consider, such as how you will afford this new bundle of joy? This concern is a very realistic one, as baby’s first year is estimated to cost upwards of $10,000. Though that figure can be staggering, pregnancy does not have to cost a fortune. There are many tricks you can use to lower expenses and deflate money-related stress.

Method 1
Revise Your Household Budget and Prioritize Expenses

There may be surprise expenses you had not considered, so it is best to be ready.

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    Take to the Internet. Research websites that offer budget calculators; most of them are free.
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    Consider reserving a bit of money once a month as soon as you have a new budget in place. This will ensure that you have some money set aside when baby finally arrives. It is better to be prepared than to have to rush to come up with funds if you need them after the child is born.
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    Open an individual account just for baby. This will ensure that the funds set aside will not be spent prematurely.
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    Make a list of all the essential baby items you will need. Don’t get sucked into an overblown idea of what your tiny baby may need; stick to the basics.
    • Begin by researching only the necessary items your baby will need for the first few months of life. Make a list of these items.
    • Make a gift registry for the things that did not get listed as necessities or those baby items that you absolutely cannot live without, but would never actually purchase on your own. Be precise and detailed even down to colors and sizes. Choose a larger store or online merchant to give your guests a simple, trouble-free way to buy gifts for your baby. This helps ensure that you won’t get left with duplicate items, or worse, items you don’t want.
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    Talk to your accountant. Find out all there is to know about child related tax credits. You may be entitled to a yearly tax credit for your child as well as childcare expenses.
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    Evaluate your current medical insurance plan. You may consider changing your plan if it does not cover well exams for your child.

Method 2
Shop Smart

Don’t buy things on a whim. Plan ahead, especially during holiday time.

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    Wait for sales and comparison shop. The Internet is your friend; there are many sites that will assist you by putting prices side-by-side so you can choose where to shop to get the best price available.
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    Consider buying in bulk.
    • Purchasing common household items such as diapers, wipes and even laundry detergent in bulk will save your family money and lessen the amount of trips you make to the store.
    • Consider purchasing food items in bulk, such as meats, canned goods, breakfast cereal and beverages. Buying large quantities of meat may be intimidating, but you can stock your freezer full. Cook and freeze meals ahead of time, once the baby arrives you will have quick and easy homemade meals for your family.
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    Clip coupons. Start while you are still pregnant by looking for coupons for diapers and other baby items.
    • Search magazines and newspapers for coupons, clip the ones you’ll use and organize them in a coupon folder or box; make specific sections for cereal, baby items, frozen foods, health and beauty items and any other category you will find helpful. This will make trips to the supermarket quick and easy.
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    Take advantage of supermarket chains that double or, in some cases, triple coupon values to save a great deal on your grocery bill.
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    Consider purchasing no-frills or store brand products. In most cases the quality is the same as the national brands. You may even begin to prefer the store brand. Almost every item in the store has a generic counterpart, even whole grain breads and cereals.
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    Enroll in product clubs. Many common brands have clubs that consumers can join to receive special discounts, coupons or in some cases free products. Check the labels on your favorite baby brands to learn how to sign up.

Method 3
Cut Down on Food Expenses During the Day

The money you spend on lunches and beverages can really add up. Consider changing your habits to save on some expenses.

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    Bring your lunch to work. Take into account the amount of money spent on take-out food and before you know it, you’ve spent a small fortune on a lunch that probable wasn’t very healthy. Pack yourself a lunch from home; add a piece of fruit and some veggies and you have a healthier meal that didn’t break the bank.
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    Switch to water. Not only is water the best thing you can drink for baby, but it won’t cost you a thing. In most homes, tap water is perfectly safe to consume. If you are concerned about the safety of your drinking water, consider putting a filter on your faucet. This may require a small investment at first but most filters last between 1 to 3 months.

Method 4
Ask for Help

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    Spread the word. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you begin to receive things once the word is out about your pregnancy. Once your doctor confirms your pregnancy, the information is passed on to your insurance company. Like magic, your mailbox will be full of freebies, such as free magazine subscriptions, diapers and baby care items, and coupons.
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    Consider borrowing. Once your friends, family and coworkers find out your expecting, they will likely shower you with offers to borrow their old pregnancy stuff. It’s not a bad idea to borrow maternity clothing such as pants and shirts or dresses. You never know how quickly your baby bump will blossom, so with a stockpile of various maternity sizes, you may never have to purchase a pregnancy wardrobe.
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    Think about acquiring gently used baby items.
    • Friends and family may offer to lend you baby clothes or toys; it’s smart to take them up on the offer. The more items you stock up on, the less you will need to buy.
    • Consider shopping at thrift stores or consignment shops, since most of these stores have a collection of nearly new baby clothes, toys, high chairs and strollers. Once your baby grows, you can pass the outgrown items on to a friend or bring them to the consignment shop and make a few dollars.


  • Make your own baby food. You can make batches ahead of time and freeze them. This saves both time and money.
  • When buying in bulk, avoid purchasing perishable items; they may no longer be fresh when the time comes for you to use them.
  • If you will be breastfeeding, consider renting a breast pump rather than buying one.


  • Never use a second hand car seat for your little one; it may not meet current safety requirements.
  • Whenever you acquire used baby items and toys, check to see that the product has not been recalled.

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Categories: Pregnancy