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The message that babies are expensive is all around it is even, actually, used as an argument to convince teenagers to use contraceptives. There is no doubt that raising children to adulthood is rather pricey, but the first year can be very cheap. If you are wondering how to get through your baby's first year on a budget, we have some tips for you!

1. Breastfeed

Breastfeeding is an awful lot cheaper than formula feeding. We won't say it's "free", because that word is hard to define. Breastfeeding mothers are generally more careful about their nutrition than the general population. Breastfeeding may mean that you spend more money on quality foods for yourself, and breastfeeding moms are probably less likely to also be receiving a paid income because of the round the clock nature of nursing a baby (unless you are pumping). Still, breastfeeding is often a very economical choice, beside it also being the most complete and easy infant nutrition.

2. Cloth diapers

Why not give cloth diapers a try? It is true that the more modern and easy ones are an expensive initial purchase, but after having diapered one child in disposables and one in cloth, I am very much sure that cloth diapers save money. A significant amount of money. Prefold diapers are the cheapest, and if you like the pocket or all-in-one styles, there are several Chinese brands on sites like Ebay that are reliable. Look for reviews on sites like Diaperswappers before you buy.

3. Hand-me-downs and second hand shops

Not everyone has relatives or friends with kids a little older than you to pass on clothes. But if you do, letting them know that you would love to receive hand-me-downs might help you a lot. Second hand shops are another option, as is sewing and knitting a lot of your baby clothes. (See: knitting for your baby for ideas!) Remember to take advantage of sales too. There are always a lot of newborn clothes left when the sales get to 70 percent off.

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