Having a baby can be expensive, and the financial commitment is often overwhelming to new parents-to-be. While there are things you may want to buy new for baby, rest assured that there is a long list of baby items that can be bought used (in like-new condition) without compromising on safety or comfort for your new bundle.
Baby Items to Buy Used
Why Buy Used?
1. It’s Economical
According to a 2010 USDA report, the average middle-income family will spend roughly $12,000 on child-related expenses in their baby’s first year of life. First time parents often fall into the trap of buying everything they see, not knowing what their baby will actually use or need. You can drastically decrease your spending by borrowing from friends or by shopping at consignment shops*.
2. It’s Healthier
Believe it or not, buying used items for baby can be a lot healthier for your little one. In 2012, abcNEWS released the results from a study that looked at the indoor air quality of a new nursery. The results were more than disturbing. The air inside the nursery contained 300 different chemicals, compared to just two found directly outside of the home. The extremely high level of chemicals is greatly due to off-gassing. Off-gassing involves the release of chemicals and toxins used during the fabrication process of new items and furniture. These chemicals are often found within the paints, solvents, glues, and even wood materials of the new product. Chemical emissions are at their highest when a product is brand new, so by buying used, you are purchasing furniture and baby products that have completed their off-gassing elsewhere.
3. It’s Eco-friendly
When choosing to buy used you are making an immediate positive impact on our environment. Approximately 55% of the 220 million tons of waste that is generated each year in the United States will end up in landfill. When you buy used or borrow from friends, you extend the life out of toys, clothing and furniture that may otherwise be tossed in landfill.
Items to Buy New vs Used
Due to ever changing safety standards, the following items often warrant buying new. If you choose to buy these used, be sure to look into recalls, ensure that a car seat has never been in a crash and read the manual before buying.
If you are buying new as suggested, you may off-gas these items prior to setting them up in the nursery by leaving the opened box in a basement, storage room or garage for as long as you choose.
Most other items can be enjoyed used and can be found in like new condition for low cost because of the little use infants will get out of it.
*when buying used, look for items that come from a smoke-free home.
**wash all clothes and blankets with a gentle, non-toxic laundry detergent before use. View my favorite cleaning products here.
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