My wife recently gave birth at Thomson Medical, we were required by doctor to stay an extra day in hospital and the bill came up an additional $4000!!!
My confinement nanny is very good cook, and when I took her grocery shopping for 1 chicken, the receipt scroll touched the ground and total was $73 for the many things purchased!
Also, during confinement, we noticed that baby had a little block nose, we bought a Xiaomi Air Purifier for $200.
Pregnancy is going to cost you a lot of money.
Let's talk about the top 10 ways to save money for your Pregnancy
This article stems from real experience with actionables.
And it is not telling you to do things like skipping Starbucks. The baby is going to wake you up at night, so do what you must to stay awake.
By the way, cost of 4 cups of Starbucks each day being invested is probably going to give you more than half a million 30-40 years down the road.
Let's get right to it!
1) Free Samples!!!
Competition is tough in the baby/mummy industry, every brand more or less will put out a lot of free samples to attract attention.
A good way to get is to go baby fairs that is held every few months.
These free samples are convenient as they come in small bottles.
In my experience, a newborn needs very little shampoo or soap as their skin is still very sensitive.
Plus, using samples instead of buying big bottles allows you to determine which is more to your liking and whether if your newborn baby likes the smell.
2) Choosing Gynae/Hospital
Choosing a good gynaecologist is very important as he/she will be the person responsible with bringing your newborn into this world.
It is also important as you will be visiting the gynae every 3 weeks during your pregnancy.
It is best to choose a gynae that is convenient to you location-wise or else a simple 30 minute gynae visit will take up half a day due to the waiting and traveling.
Take note that some gynae can only give birth at certain hospitals, for me the gynae prioritises over the hospital.
You can book maternity tours with the various hospitals to get a feel of things as well before you commit.
There may be "horror stories" about government hospitals, but always take it with a pinch of salt, as in this day and age, people hardly post any positive experience.
You canchoose a regular gynaecologist with government hospitals, of course, this will add on to the costs.
All in all, you should choose based on your budget and comfort level.
3) Nourish During Pregnancy
In my experience, other than folic acid, multi-vitamins, and fish oil, there isn't much emphasis on nourishments during pregnancy.
During pregnancy is the time when the foetus forms into your newborn baby, it is at this stage where the baby receives everything from mummy's constitution.
Once delivered, the baby can only receive nourishments from either breastmilk or formula milk.
I know this because the gynae told us my baby should have a birth weight of 3.2kg.
My wife had quite a bit of nourishments and my baby delivered at 3.7kg (despite week 38)!!!
Since, I have become an advocate of nourishments during pregnancy is more than if not just as important.
If mummy can be well rested and nourished during the pregnancy, she should recover quicker during confinement.
4) Don't Buy Everything
It is very easy to get excited being new parents and we have a tendancy of splurging excessively on those cute, tiny, baby clothes!
Newborns outgrow things very quickly, a bassinet can cost $200 onwards but a baby only sleeps in it for about 3-4 months, it is more cost effective to get a cot.
A cot that can be converted into a children's bed may cost $500 but it can be used for many many years.
And if you are heading to baby fairs, remember to keep your hands to yourself and not buy every single type of sleep-ware for your baby.
Plus if your baby is already familiar with the bed there is no transitional phrase to worry about; i.e., less crying to fall asleep.
5) Invest in Good Equipment/Services
We want what's best for our kids, but what is best may not be the most expensive.
Neither should we cheap out on things also.
Good quality equipment should be well built, made from reliable materials, these combined should make the item more durable and lasting.
As the saying goes: "You're too poor to buy cheap things!"
Buying good quality things will reduce headaches and clean ups, for example, experienced parents will tell you to invest in good diapers to wear at night.
You do not want to wash baby cot sheets every time there is a poop blowout aka poo-nami.
Poo-namis are messy, and tedious to clean up, all to save on less 10 cent difference.
6) Have more kids
This may sound very odd, but there is more pros than cons to have more than 1 kid.
I am quite a strong advocate on this being an only child as it can get lonely growing up.
Being a parent now, my beliefs are further strengthened.
Clothes for example, can be outgrown even before my baby can wear it once.
With one more kid, the cost is spread out, remember the bassinet that costs $200? Now you can use it twice as long and it costs $100 a kid instead.
That said, "do your national duty" and have 3 or more if you can afford it.
There are more baby bonuses, grants, and reliefs for bigger families.
Hiring a domestic helper/part-time cleaner frees up more quality time to spend with your kids, do you agree?
7) Take Advantage of Schemes Available
Here is a list of various schemes/grants/bonus available to new parents to enjoy:
- Baby Bonus
- Child Developmental Account aka CDA
- Medisave Grant
- Tax Reliefs and Rebates
- NTUC Goodstart Bundle
- National Library Board Baby Gift
Take some time to apply for them once you have applied for your child's birth cert.
There is an app created as part of Singapore's Smart Nation Initiative called Moments of Life (MOL) that allows you to apply for most of the above at one go.
8) Make Use of Company's Maternity Benefits
Almost all companies have some form of maternity leave set aside for mummies and some even has paternal leave for dads.
Ministry of Manpower has 12 to 16 weeks of paid maternity leave entitlement.
The first few months is crucial because it is where both parents are adjusting themselves to parenthood.
Get well rested so that you can better cope with "mum guilt" when returning to work.
9) Go North!
If you have a car, going to Malaysia might be worth while as many baby products are much cheaper than in Singapore shops.
Previously seen in the fake formula milk scare in Johor Bahru, as a general guideline, do not buy anything the baby can put into their mouths.
Personally, I head up to Paradigm mall as they have Pet Lover's center to stock up on my pet food.
One of our readers heard I was writing an article on this and recommended Manjaku Baby Mall (the shop is housed in a hard to miss green building).
There you can buy things that is not usually available in a baby fair, not to mention it is from brands like Pigeon and Pureen.
Going to JB, I would make a day out of it to eat all the delicious food and pump petrol as well.
If you are bringing your newborn, remember to make passport first!
10) Do Financial Planning Early
As always, having a baby (be it first or more) is a massive undertaking, you have to do some financial planning to cope with it.
This point in itself can be an article, but let's keep it short and simple.
Through our course of work, we helped many mummies-to-be save insurance costs with our detailed analysis and product bundling capabilities.
In short, you have to support your child till they are in their 20s or maybe more because #sandwichgeneration.
Generally , you should prioritize protection over wealth accumulation the child's younger age.
And instead of only cutting down expenses, try to increase your income as well.
Some do it through various freelance work and some do it through driving Grab/Go-Jek part time, what do you think?
Driving Grab/Go-Jek if you have your own car and timing allows, you can reduce the costs of car ownership, true?
Bonus Tip: Joining Facebook Groups and Learn Together
Here at TheAstuteParent, we are one of the largest resource for insurance planning and financial advice for families! Over the course of our careers, we have met and helped many families.
The community is there for you ask and answer questions, share your knowledge and meet like-minded people.
Being a breadwinner is a unique stage in life. So take on that responsibility and be an Astute Parent!
Last updated on October 15th, 2019 at 12:38 am