As some of you may know my husband and I are expecting our first baby on our one year anniversary… yeah we crazy but that’s a story for another day…(i won our pumpkin carving contest!) Since we were only newlyweds we had very little money so we had to be as thrifty as possible.
All I remember growing up was people saying how expensive it is to have a baby! And it can be with CRAZY medical bills but setting the medical stuff aside and focusing on the things you do have control of it can be pretty manageable and not as scary as people may play it out to be.
Mind you wee have been super blessed to have had family and friends donate a lot of things which has made things a lot easier but just wanted to share a few tips on how we are keeping costs low during this time….
1. Tell people about the baby! everyone has some stuff stored away they don’t need or know people that may have stuff stored away they don’t need. Let people know and they will offer left right and center.
2. Yard sales and thrift stores. Lots of people tell me ohh you should buy new so it can last all your children. But when I do the math it doesn’t make sense. E.g stroller 2nd hand $30 say it doesn’t last me as long I get another second hand one for $30 which totals to $60… verses buying new one that lasts me all my children for $200… $60 is significantly cheaper than $200. I would say buy new when items that have expiration dates or have been in a accident. But if you are lucky to find someone that has only used it for one child that’s a bonus!
3. Stock up a little now. Since finding out about the baby we have money allocated in the budget to buy baby things. Mainly stocking up on things that you can never have too many of.. eg. baby wipes, or diapers (but get various sizes or brands as you don’t know which one you will prefer yet…)
4. Allocate money aside before the baby is born. By factoring the baby in the monthly budget you won’t be shocked to where your money is going to once the baby comes. You will begin to form habits and wean yourself into adjusting your lifestyle to the new budget. We started off by only setting aside $25 then increased it as time got closer.
5. Be crafty. I decided I wanted to make something for the baby that was special to them. So with no prior skills and YouTube as my tutor I got my crafty on by making easy quilts, binky clips, matching car seat covers and bibs.. before I knew it I was saving money along the way. (on the right is my latest project) p.s if you are not crafty there are lots of no-sew crafts you can do. Glue gun has become my best friend.
What are some of your ideas on preparing for a baby on a budget? I would love to read your thoughts and ideas
So after 6 months of marriage we finally decide it’s time to buy a home….
I knew it would be tricky to find a place but I didn’t think it would be this difficult.
We are so fortunate to live in a really cheap area of the USA that even with only one income source we can buy a house. It was also named one of the top cities to raise a family… the benefits can go on but for now it’s where my husband goes to school…
Things we are looking at before we buy…
– duration of stay to actually make it worth it time and money wise you should be planning on living there for at least 4 years.
-do you have enough saved up that if you lost your job you could still afford house payments for a at least 6 months?
– if you want less hassle and ease through the process get a Realtor so they can do all the calling and appointments for you. But it all comes at a cost.. (usually comes out of the cost of the house)
– research different mortgage brokers and their interest prices as well as their fees as there can be significant differences between them.
– get a pre-approval letter so you know where your budget is.. and of course you will be allowed more than you can afford so stay well below that price.
So this is our simple criteria for our perfect starter home…
– basement that can be rented out completely separate (help out mortgage payment)
– close to both work and school
– within budget of one person income (incase one of us loses our job)
Should be easy right?…but as usual we bump into a few issues
– most of the homes in our price range need a bit of extra work and some cases a lot
– location…too much in the ghetto so finding reliable tenant’s will be harder
But our quest is not over yet.. summer is nearly over but the cold winter months will hopefully bring in the great deals!!! So still going to keep up in the hunt!!
Stay tune for more updates on the home we end up with…
First blog post for HappyTalk!! (Pat on the back to myself, its about time)…. so here is the inspiration for the name for our blog! I am a big fan of Broadway musicals and I learnt this song as a little girl. Our blog name is taken from the title of one of the songs from the musical South Pacific. This musical is set in the Hawaiian islands during World War II and the predominant theme it explores is that of inter-racial marriage which was extremely uncommon during this time. I love this song title as it describes what this blog is about, and that it also talks about and having and making dreams come true whatever they may be. If you know musicals its a super cheesy song (but I don’t mind a little chessyness every now and then)…Anyways This song is called Happy Talk hope you enjoy it and keep dreaming. Here is my little rendition on this song but click here for the original…Stay posted for lots more fun updates here on HappyTalk!