How can i afford everything?


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Sep 2, 2005
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How can i afford everything a baby needs? Will somebody PLEASE tell me what the essentials are for a baby aside from the things that are nice to have?
My mum is a single mum and shes giving me every spare penny she has after paying all the bills. Nobody will take me on so i feel uselss :( i feel so bad for making my mum so skint especially knowing the money shes giving me isnt really going that far... a few bottles,baby grows and a bag of nappies a week.
I havent bought anything for bubs yet and im 24 weeks.
I think i'm entitled to CTC and Child benfits and also the sure start grant but isnt all that for after the birth? I need some serious help before hand.
Anybodys comments would be appreciated very much, Thanks. Amy
Hi Amy

I have heard of the maternity grant (is about £500). I have out a link on to a page with more info it says something about if you can claim before the birth. Don't feel bad hon, I have only just started buying things and I am about a week ahead of you. I will also have a look and see if I can find a list of essentials for you. xxx
Thankyou beanie!! So it says i need to apply for sure start 3 months before edd..ive got my midwifes appointment in about 3 weeks from now so if i discuss this with her im sure i will be ok? That site was very helpful. thanks for getting back to me xxxx
No probs hon, yeah I'd dicuss it with your midwife. You need to ask for a MAT B1 form also to help with your claim. You get this from your midwife too. I just don't want you feeling useless, you sound like you are doing everything you can and that's all your baby needs, a mum who loves them and wants the best for them. I am buying little bits here and there as I can't afford to buy a huge amount, and believe me it quickly mounts up. I know that some woolies (the big ones) do a baby range which seems good value, and boots do a good basics range. I have found them good to get things from. xxx
Look at the prams in the argos book you can get some great deals they have one with a travel cot and a car seat etc for less than £100.00, or if you don't mind 2nd hand, look in the local paper or ask around people practically give stuff away.

Good luck

charity shops are really good bets- I've been routing around in mine for a few weeks now and have got lots of good quality, clean clothes. I've found Next baby stuff for £1 for a sleep suit and matching hat, lots of cute onesies for about 75p- £1 each too. I've also got several hand-knitted little cardies that were really cheap and looked like they'd never been worn. Made you slightly sad for whoever had gone to the trouble of making them but they've found an appreciative home now! Mind you Asda does very cheap packets of suits as does Woolies as someone said. Adams had a sale on a few weeks ago but anyway they are cheap for things like scratch mittens and bibs. I found a baby gym in a charity shop for £3.50 that had been £40 in the Early Learning Centre too- it's all washable so I don't have a problem with that. Ebay can be good- I've got second-hand washable nappies on there for about a third of the price that they are new (and they were very clean). Ikea has a cot for about £50 but it does have fixed sides I think- other than that I think I saw one with drop sides and a three level adjustable bottom in Mothercare for something like £70- I'm planning on sussing that out soon. Obviously if you have friends or family with stuff they can lend or give you that would be cool- I was really hoping I'd discover someone who wanted to clear an attic of stuff but sadly there's no no one I know. Someone gave me a baby bath they wanted shot of though so it doesn't hurt asking. Local papers are good for cots and travel things I think- probably better than Ebay.

Your baby's main essential is you though! My Mum and Nan both had 100% hand-me-downs with their kids- it was just the way that things were then, no matter what financial state you were in. All of my nappies and baby stuff got passed on to another cousin eventually- it's not like your growing baby will be in any one size for long anyway. From what I can gather the one thing that must be new is the mattress though as it's the safest thing to do.

E-bay is good for second hand stuff!!! I would love buying all brand new but it is just not possible. I bought a Mothercare moses basket and stand for £25 including P&P and a Graco Sterling travel system pushchair for £26 including P&P. Although the car seat is included, i will buy one brand new(just for security) that will never be moved from the car and use the other one as a kind of chair or use it around town. I bought a bed on e-bay too but was a bit disappointed with it so will resell it and buy a new one.

Clothes wise, I bought some new clothes in very cheap shop, i do not go to next, adams,... unless there are interesteing sales on. I bought on e-bay a bundle of 55 pieces of clothes for boys 0-3 months for £20 including P&P and they are in VGC!!!!

I do not know anybody in the area so I cannot rely on gifts or people who have got children. My b/f does not like me buying second hand but there is not enough money to buy what you would want to buy.

The only thing with e-bay is that you have to be careful with who you trade with, make sure they have 100 % feedback on at least 15 items and if they have not got that, read the comments to find out why they have got some negatives. But if you can use e-bay, you will find some very good bargains!!!

Good luck!!!
I understand you completely! and it is also very frustrating, as a mother-to-be, not to be ab;e to afford nice and new things for your little one, but that's just the way it is for most of are not alone!

I agree with the charity shops option, even though I have not yet looked in there because I am kind of still early, but I look online a lot! (as I was on holidays!) Tesco can have some really nice and cheap newborn clothes: I bought a newborn shirt for £2.50 and a pyjama with little socks for £5, because it was exactly what I was looking for. Also, Ikea has few but good items, like cots range from £23 to £64, a pack of 5 bibs for £2.29, 2 blankets for £3.00, a changing mat for £3.50,etc... The only problem with Ikea is that there are very few shop in Uk, and even if you can look at their stuff online, you can't order!

Here is the link to Ikea stuff:, look for children's ikea on the left and then, for the babies.

Argos can also be a good place to look for things...I am personally not confident enough to buy stuff through Ebay (always worried that I won't get what I am paying for!!!), but it's just me!

Good luck, and let us know how things go... we are always there! and again, YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

take care,

Mel xx
Thanks, yea i dont really trust e-bay either. Im going to have a look around the charity shops on tuesday, and im going to see what tesco and asda have in store. Im already feeling like my babys not getting as good as all the other kids are getting, i know its silly but i cant help but think it.
thankyou very much for everyones help and advice xxxxx
Watch out on ebay though it could go the other way round and you can end up paying more and getting ripped off with tatty goods or dishonest sellers. You can get some good stuff on there though, just be careful!!
I am a good ebay member :wink: But not everybody is like me unfortunately!!! I was disappointed with the cot bed I bought and managed to sell it back, so this time it is going to be brand new :) My b/f has forbidden me to go again on it, it does not like e-bay either and all the hassle of it!!!!

So i might check charity shops and online shops too!!!!
Thanks everyone, I have been looking online alot and i came across a disney pram for 69.99, i know it maybe dont look as nice as alot of yours but for 69.99 thats a bargain right? I would really appreciate it if somebody could take a look at this link and tell me whether or not its evan worth saving up for. (also im not too sure whether a car seat is in with that price, i doubt it for that price though)

link here

Thats the link, i would really appreciate it thanks, Amy X
Hi Amy. Don't feel like your baby isn't getting as good as the others, from the sounds of things baby has a great mum and a fab nan, and no amount of money can buy that. I have found supermarkets good places to go for essentials such as sleeping suits and baby vests. Also I have been picking up offers, such as ASDA were doing a BOGOF on baby wipes so have stocked up there. Mothercare do a good range of prams and buggies and there was a sale on at Babies r us where I got my travel system from (reduced from £240 to £160 including car base seat) so just keep looking around. Also I was lucky to find mothercare having a sale of last seasons winter clothes so got some there, and got a cute winter coat in woolies half price. TKMaxx can have some great bargains, and Dunhelm sell bedding at great prices. Also matalan have a cute range, I got four pairs of socks for £1.75 which I was pleased with. One great tip I got from a friend was the NCT nearly new sales (see for more details - it also has some good tips about the essentials that you need). They picked up loads of stuff, some really gorgeous clothes that had hardly been worn. Wherever you go have fun choosing things for your baby, its great fun thinking that your little one will be wearing them soon.
Amy have just looked at the link, its so cute, we got the baby bouncy chair from the same range so it gets my thumbs up. From what I can see though I'm not sure whether there is a car seat or not, its hard to tell from the picture. It doesn't mention it in the description so I do't think it is but I could be wrong
Thankyou Beanie that NCT Website is really good! My mums just bought a few vests and socks and stuff from Tradex - really cheap! I didnt know half of these websites existed, once i get a bit of money ill be well away.
Yeah i couldnt tell either thats what i mean, From the top handle bit it looks like there is but then again for 70 quid i doubt it will be in with it. thankyou for looking at it X
I know what you mean it does look like there is one but it just doesn't say for definate. The baby bouncy chair was really nioce, very padded and looked good quality so its worth checking out. Glad the site was useful, have fun shopping hon xxxxx
Amy, I have checked your link, and I am not sure either that there is any car seat! Have you checked the pramcenterglasgow website? They have good price, I found a travel system at £128 when it is £199 at Argos!!

Just check this link, it's the cheapest travel system they have! ... t_id=1160#

Keep on browsing, I'm sure you'll find great things for your little one!

Alos, I was shopping at Morrison's over the week end, and looked at the adverts board, and there were quite a few baby stuff...maybe worth looking at in your local stores?

Take care,

Mel xx
melhoney, sorry it took me so long to reply ive been away and didnt notice the reply. me and my mum LOVE that pram!!! i think its so nice and reading up on it sounds really good. going to look into getting it delivered so thanks very much.

Since my moan about not having anything a few weeks back i now have a cot, moses basket, bouncer, LOADS of babygrows/vests/bibs/hats etc i have a steriliser also. tesco/asda/charity shops/tk max/my local newspaper have all been great and ive managed to only spend around £150 - with a fanstatic bargain i saw an ad in the post office - pine cot 6 months old £45!!!! it was from a really posh family so good condition too. ive still got to buy a mattress yet but i think i'm doing well so far - again im sorry for going on! lol

take care amy X
Hey, Amy,

That's great!!!! :D :D :D :D
Told you, there are many ways of finding things cheaper! I went onan NCT "nearly new sale", and I bought a mamas and papas cot mobile for £5! in the market, it's £30!
I have bought a couple of teddies from the charity shops as well, and I finally bought something on Ebay! A mamas and papas melino bouncer for £22 including postage. It's £35 in Argos!

I am glad you found lots of stuff, keep it up, and lots of love,
Mel xx

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