The cost of raising a child in America is pegged around $233,610. And the reports indicate a sharp increase from the figures recorded a decade ago. Indeed, the US standard of living is quite high, and it’s expected that the ripple effect will impact raising kids. With the increased costs in child care, some grandparents have had to come to the rescue. However, you can take frugal living decisions to make raising kids less expensive. Below are some tips.
Give cloth diapers a try
According to leafscore.com, the annual cost of disposable diapers in the US ranges from $1,800 to $3,300. On the other hand, reusable or cloth diapers cost $584 in the same period. The difference in amount is enough to prove that reusables may be a better option if you want to cut costs. Thankfully, modern cloth diapers no longer require plastic pants and pins as technology has evolved.
Cloth diaper options with velcro enhance the safety of the baby or toddler wearing them. Others are fitted with snap-on closures, which are also ideal. While the downside of cloth diapers is the increased laundry, it might be worth it from a cost angle. If your child is of diaper-wearing age, this option can save you lots of money. You can keep them in affordable and helpful wet bags for easy accessibility when stepping out.
Find free or inexpensive entertainment
Today, more parents are swayed to invest in expensive entertainment tools for their kids. Tablets, iPads, and gadgets of the like are incredibly expensive – not to mention the monthly subscriptions of some child-friendly entertainment apps. Indeed, the monthly amount may not seem like much. However, upon calculating the annual costs, you may realize a sum that could have been put to better use.
A solution is to find ways to entertain the kids without relying on excessive screen time. You can plan hikes, visit the beach in summer, engage in playground activities, and ride bicycles around the block (with supervision). The possibilities are endless and hold excellent opportunities to strengthen the bond between children and the rest of the family.
The debate about how kids, a few decades ago, thrived without costly gadgets continues. While it’s true that times have changed and technology is sometimes necessary, you can still adopt healthy and less costly entertainment for your young ones.
Consider your kids sharing rooms
The US housing industry keeps appreciating, and if you have no means to buy a new house now, there are options to explore. Your kids can share their rooms to cut down on housing costs. Statistics indicate that most American families immediately opt to secure new housing when their kids transition from toddlers to tweens.
Indeed, there may be the pressure of a growing or expanding family. However, if you can wait a little longer, getting your young kids to share rooms can be a great idea. Research has shown that it boosts siblings’ tolerance levels. Ultimately, it also saves you the money you would have used to get a bigger home where kids would have had their rooms.
Aside from these, discounted grocery shopping, buying generic items, and planning family meals are great ideas to explore. Every legal and healthy thing you can do to cut costs when raising kids is welcome. Also, it is advisable to include your kids in the decision-making process and explain the changes if they are old enough.
- Lisa has been blogging since 2013, and loves sharing resources and ideas for living a simple life. To get free printables, bonus words, and more - sign up for the newsletter.