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  • Shopping For A Newborn? What To Buy Brand New And What Items Can Be Pre-Loved

    If you're on a budget, this guide will come in handy.
    by Dahl D. Bennett .
Shopping For A Newborn? What To Buy Brand New And What Items Can Be Pre-Loved
PHOTO BY Shutterstock/Have a nice day Photo
  • All parents know that having a newborn doesn't exactly come cheap. Buying a crib, feeding bottles, stroller, car seat, onesies, breast pump, and toys for every developmental stage can all add up.

    According to an article in Life Hacker, the 2015 Consumer Expenditures Survey shows that baby items can cost as much as $12,980 a year for a middle-income and married two-child family in the United States (US). That's approximately Php648,291!

    If you are the type who does not mind receiving hand-me-downs from relatives or friends, this might help ease the burden on the budget. However, you can't always choose what you receive and usually the more expensive items like strollers and car seats are the last ones considered for giving away.

    Enter used or secondhand items that are available online or in physical stores. If you're thinking of buying used baby items, it might be good to take note of these tips from Life Hacker first.

    Baby items that should ideally be bought new

    Car seats

    According to Life Hacker even if a car seat looks like it’s in great shape, it is hard to determine if it is expired (yes, in the US, car seats typically expire six years from the date of manufacture), recalled by the manufacturer, or has been damaged in a crash.

    “When shopping for a new car seat that fits your budget, keep in mind that they have to pass federal safety regulations — as long as they do, even more affordable ones are perfectly safe to use,” the article reads.


    Breast pumps

    When it comes to breast pumps, sanitation is the biggest issue. “…There is no assurance that the device will be cleaned and disinfected between owners, which could allow for the ingestion of infectious particles that could make you or your baby sick,” writes Life Hacker. For the same reasons, baby items such as nipples, feeding bottles, and pacifiers are all best bought new.


    The price for cribs can range anywhere from Php2,000 to as high as Php10,000 depending on the durability and materials used. So, it is understandable that this is one of the items that many Filipino families hope to either borrow or ‘inherit’ from relatives or friends.

    However, in countries like the US, safety is very important and new cribs have to be certified by Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association to ensure it meets current manufacturing standards. If it can’t be avoided, it is important to use secondhand cribs with caution.

    “Children … put cribs through tremendous wear and tear, and joints can become weak in the heat of storage,” warns the same article. It is always good to inspect the item closely to avoid mishaps in the future.

    Baby items that are okay as hand-me-downs


    Used playpens should be inspected for tears and holes, according to Life Hacker because they “could present a choking hazard.”

    High chairs

    Best if the high chair comes from someone you trust and again, inspect for any wear an tear. Be sure that it comes with safety harnesses with buckles that work and a fixed crotch post that keeps baby from climbing or sliding out of his chair.

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    Baby bathtubs

    These are usually made from plastics or silicone. Slightly used should be okay but makes sure to clean well to remove any possible molds or mildew, advises Life Hacker.

    Baby items that you can buy used

    Baby clothes

    Babies grow so fast that you can’t invest too much on stuff like clothes because they will likely outgrow it in a few months. Buying from thrift stores and overruns make a lot of sense if you want to save. Slightly used from trusted relatives are also okay, just wash them thoroughly with warm water for your peace of mind.

    Baby monitors

    Baby monitors are a big help for busy mommies and since they are not something that comes in contact with your baby, getting them second hand is okay. The most common and inexpensive types are audio monitors but these days, video monitors which you can connect to your phone are readily available.

    Toys and books

    Buying them on bargain is perfectly okay but Life Hacker adds that it is still important to “check for any loose or missing parts or chipped paint.”

    Not everyone will likely agree with the list but it should be a good guide, especially for new parents on a budget, on what can be bought brand new and what can be safely acquired second hand. Still, the bottom line is, that not all baby items need to be new.

    Moms share a list of baby items that you don't really need to buy for your baby here.

    What other parents are reading

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