Raising Kids is Expensive – Here’s How to Do It Frugally

Parenting on a budget
It is possible to save money as you raise your kids? Yes, with tips like the ones below. Pexels, CC0 License.

Who said raising a child was easy? There are sleepless nights, hidden expenses, and a lot of stress involved when raising a child. In fact, it can be incredibly difficult trying to raise a child when you’re trying to live frugally. Luckily for you, there are plenty of ways to save money on raising a child, and you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to make compromises. So without further ado, here are a couple of fantastic ways to raise children on a budget without making them live cheaply.

Parenting on a budget
It is possible to save money as you raise your kids? Yes, with tips like the ones below. Pexels, CC0 License.

Don’t be ashamed of buying used

One of the biggest costs when raising a child is purchasing things such as clothing and toys. Don’t be afraid of buying used or receiving hand-me-downs from other family members and friends.

Garage sales are also an excellent source of fantastic items for a low price. If you’re worried about hygiene then this might not be an option for you. However, washing them in a hot cycle with a good detergent will remove almost all of the bacteria and germs and make it clean and fresh for your child to use.

Purchase multi-purpose items

This is especially important if you have multiple children. Instead of buying two single beds, purchase a bunk bed. Instead of getting two computers, get a single one for your children to share.

Instead of buying a double stroller, invest in a sit and stand one. WiseMamma has plenty of additional advice on sit and stand strollers, and it’s the perfect example of a multi-use product that will save you a lot of money in the future, especially since it’s going to be useless once your children grow older enough.

Flexible working hours

Instead of hiring a nanny or sending your child to daycare, consider speaking to your employer and asking them to allow you to change your working hours, work remotely from home, or receive assistance for your childcare. Paying someone to look after your child is extremely expensive and can sometimes reduce the quality of time you spend with your child, so try to avoid it if possible.

Limit their toys

Children love toys. It’s not uncommon to spends thousands a year on different devices and gadgets for them to use, which is why it’s incredibly important that you try and limit the number of toys you buy. As with the first point, try and buy used if possible. If not, then try and only buy new toys once they’re on sale, or if you have a coupon for it.

Watch the grocery bill

One of the golden rules of living healthily is to always buy fresh ingredients and cook your own meals. However, you want to avoid all of the special gourmet dishes and ingredients and try to skip the fast food as often as possible.

You want to cook all your meals from scratch (even the baby food!) in order to save plenty of money to use on other things. Just remember that being frugal with your children starts with your own money-saving attitude, so don’t neglect the importance of teaching your children good habits with their eating.


  1. Excellent article, Christy, with several great ideas!

    A money-saving idea I’d like to share is this: use the library extensively. When my kids were younger, we went to the library frequently for children’s books and videos … all free resources! Plus our library held special events, story time, reading contests, and more. In addition to instilling in kids a love of reading and learning, the library is a great resource for a variety of free entertainment. Oh, books on tape, too, for long road trips! Can’t say enough good things about community libraries 🙂

  2. Another fantastic post my friend. My niece is a single mom and is quite crafty at seeking out ‘gently used’ toys, etc. for her little girl. She actually joined a Facebook group where mom’s exchange their kid’s outgrown toys for other things with other moms. 🙂 xx

  3. When my kids were young, money was often tight, so I relied on second hand shops for much of their clothing, as well as sometimes books and toys. I used to take the kids on what we called “treasure hunts” to find valuable items like unopened board games or jigsaw puzzles buried in well, junk. I recall several times getting compliments from my daughter’s teachers about the cute outfits she would wear, only to flabbergast them when I told them where I had found the clothes.

    • Amy, your comment reminds me of one I read earlier today about the stigma surrounding second-hand stores. They’re a great place to find gently used clothes and shoes, as well as movies and books. Glad that you’ve had a good experience with stores like these and I think you taught those teachers a thing or two about being savvy money-wise 😉

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