5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You Big Bucks

So, you’ve got a little or two, or maybe three or more, and all the cutest stuff to go with them. Have you ever wondered just how much all this stuff is costing you, or how much money those trendy habits swallow up? Well, let’s take a close look at 5 young family mistakes that are costing you some serious dough.

5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You

1: Baby Food

Let’s start with a biggie right out of the bag.

Sure, it’s so easy to buy a ton of those amazing pouches, throw them in the diaper bag and go, right? A kiddo gets hungry and you just pop the cap off and hand it over.

The average cost of those pouches ranges from $1 to $1.50 (maybe more, depending on how fancy you get). Assuming you give a child one per day, that’s around $30 a month.

For a snack. For one kid.

That’s a yearly cost of around $365-$547. For a snack. For one kid.

And let’s be real for a second. Who gives your kid just 1 pouch a day? A 2-year-old can go through two or three of them at a time.

Remember, that’s only for one tot. What if you have two…or four?

That’s not counting ready-made baby food servings or any other snacks.

You can easily save yourself potentially thousands of dollars by simply pureeing your own fruits and veggies and storing them in refillable pouches.

One sweet potato, 2 apples and a few spinach leaves are far less expensive than those pouches and go further by miles.

Swap your money for a little extra time and save yourself thousands right out of the gate.

And wait. There’s more.

5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You

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2: Diapers

In case you’re wondering, this is not about cloth diapering.

If, like the majority of parents out there, you prefer to use disposable diapers, did you know you likely are making a simple mistake that’s costing you hundreds of dollars?

It’s as simple as this: you’re probably buying diapers that are too big.

Diapers get more expensive as they go up in size. Let’s use Huggies for example. Using Walmart’s price of Huggies, Little Snugglers, newborn diapers are around $24.27 for a box of 87 diapers.

That’s about $0.28 per diaper.

The Little Snugglers, size 4 diapers are around $46.39 for 140 diapers. That’s about $0.33 per diaper. That’s a $0.05 jump per diaper.

But wait!

Little Snugglers, size 6, jump to nearly $0.50 per diaper!

There is a weight range on every box of diapers, telling you the approximate diaper size your little one needs based on how much they weigh.

Remember, though, these are approximations. Diapers also have elastic around the legs, and you know what elastic means!

That puppy stretches!

So why are we buying diapers that are too big for our babies? Well, probably because we’re worried about the diaper fitting too tightly and becoming uncomfortable.

But there’s another way to see if the diaper is the right size for your little one.

There are usually lines on the front of the diaper where the sticky tabs go.

You can see it if you look up the Huggies diapers. There are two purple lines on each side of the front of the Little Snugglers diapers. If the fastening tabs do not make it to those purple lines, it’s time to upsize.

If you’re like me, you probably didn’t know this and you’ve probably been upsizing way too early, costing you at least a nickel for every diaper change, right on up to a quarter per diaper change.

That’s dollars, every day.

So far, we’ve saved about $500-$700 per year per child.

5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You

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5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You Big Bucks

3: Buying Brand New Things for Your 2nd Baby

There are some things that need be replaced when it comes to second babies.

For instance, you don’t want to reuse pacifiers.

However, there are countless other items that can be shared.

Things like baby carriers, cribs, strollers and travel systems, gently used clothes, toys, books, etc.

If you plan on having more than 1 baby, a great way to save major bucks is to save items in good condition for the next one.

Not every piece of clothing needs to be a hand-me-down, but if you have items that are still in good condition, there’s really no reason to replace them.

Another way to save money is to buy furniture and baby gear items in neutral colors so they can be reused regardless of the next baby’s gender.

If you plan on having more than one baby, buy a travel system that can accommodate two kids or more when you’re purchasing for the first time.

Convertible items like car seats and carriers will also save you major money as they fit your baby as she grows and help you avoid 5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You.

4: Toddler Beds

Of this entire list, I have discovered that toddler beds are one of the biggest wastes of all time.

Your baby usually starts off in a crib. The customary change is to then put them in a toddler bed once they’ve outgrown their crib.

Here’s the thing. A toddler bed is usually pretty small, which means your child will eventually outgrow the toddler bed, too.

Another thing that’s worth mentioning is that a toddler bed can’t sustain the weight of an adult.

Now, if your toddler can just lay down all by themselves and go to sleep, you are one lucky parent!

Most of us have tots that need a bit of snuggling and tucking in before they’ll close their eyes for the night. If they’re in a toddler bed, good luck making that work without snapping the thing—no offense.

Instead of wasting your couple hundred bucks on a toddler bed, you can purchase a twin bed and mattress.

It’s amazingly easy to find twin beds that sit very low to the ground so your little one can easily get in and out of it on their own.

If you’re concerned about your tot falling out of bed, you can easily purchase guardrails that attach to any bedframe (like this one!)

To be honest, though, my 2-year-old sleeps in his twin bed ($69 from Ikea), and has never fallen out of it. It sits less than a foot off the ground, which means if he does happen to fall out, he isn’t at risk.

It holds both mine and my husband’s weight, and it’s big enough that our son will fit in it for years.

5: No Meal Planning

As your little ones grow, so do their appetites. Exponentially.

You’ll quickly find mealtimes graduating from little bits of this and that to scoops and servings in no time.

One of the easiest ways to lose track of your money is to go grocery shopping without a plan.

Once you’re at the market, it’s all too easy to just grab things that look good and go. But what you’ll discover is that if you plan your meals, make a list of ingredients and snacks (and stick to it), you’ll save a whole lot of cash!

Planning your meals puts the ball back in your court, where you are totally in control of what you’re purchasing and why. You’ll have a better idea of how much you need, and where every ingredient and item are going to go.

Find out how to save money on groceries without coupons!

Creating a budget will put your money visually in front of you and give you an idea of what you need to spend and where.

Sticking to that budget is going to ensure that you aren’t losing track of what you’re spending, which by default will save you exorbitantly.

So, now that you know about these 5 young family habits that are costing you big time, the buck can stop here, so to speak, and the savings can pile up, freeing up your cash for other things.

After all, you work hard for your money. Why shouldn’t it work for you?

Elizabeth Jimenez is a mom of two under two-years-old. As business owners forging a company from scratch, she and her husband have had to learn firsthand what it means to save and make money at the same time and encourage others that it’s totally possible to reach financial goals.

Did you Like 5 Young Family Mistakes That Are Costing You Big Bucks? Check out these posts, too!

The Minimalist List of Newborn Essentials
10 Time and Money Saving Baby Hacks
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